‘Northern Connectivity’ by June 2021

The Highways Ministry is expected to complete the Northern Highway Connectivity Project funded by the Asian Development Bank (ADB) by June next year, The Sunday Morning learnt.

Accordingly, the Cabinet has extended the period of the relevant loan granted, up to the end of this year.

Speaking to The Sunday Morning, Highways Ministry Secretary Ranjith Premasiri said the project had begun in 2014 and has been delayed due to the Covid-19 situation in the country.

“There was only some development work to be completed,” he said, adding that the Ministry would complete the project by mid next year.

The renovation of national highways, provincial roads, and newly constructed bridges of the Northern and North Central Provinces is being performed under the Northern Highway Connectivity Project financed by the ADB. Funds up to $ 98 million are provided by the ADB for this purpose.

Two additional packages of contracts pertaining to the Medawachchiya-Horowpotana road have also been awarded in the month of March 2019 from the balances of the loan grant, while the construction work mentioned above could not be completed before 30 June 2020, which marks the end of the validity period of the loan grant. (MM)