Azerbaijan, World Bank sign $300 million loan agreement

Azerbaijan, World Bank sign $300 million loan agreement
# 25 December 2008 08:15 (UTC +04:00)
The additional financing will complement the $200 million loan approved for the project in January 2006.
The agreement was signed by Samir Sharifov, Azerbaijan’s Minister of Finance, and Gregory Jedrzejczak, World Bank Country Manager for Azerbaijan.
Azerbaijan Highway 2 Project aims to upgrade the remaining 112 km of the highway between Alat and Masalli and reconstruction of the 41 km long Tagiyev – Sahil bypass that connects the roads from Baku to Russian and Iranian borders. It will also cover rehabilitation of about 200 km of local roads; technical assistance, Monitoring and Evaluation, and the cost of financial audits.
The original Azerbaijan Highway 2 Project was developed based on the request from the Government of Azerbaijan to finance the upgrading of the entire Alat-Masalli section (143 km) of the North-South corridor and the rehabilitation of the Baku-Shamakhi section (124 km) of the East-West corridor. The project objective was to reduce road transport costs and improve access, transit and road safety by upgrading and rehabilitating selected sections of the existing East-West and North-South corridors.
The Additional Financing covers two components:
Component 1: Upgrading of the remaining sections of the highway between Alat and Masalli and rehabilitation of the existing Baku bypass between Tagiyev and Sahil, as well as about 200 km of secondary and local roads. This component comprises civil works for the above roads as well as the consultancy services for engineering design and the supervision of the works.
Component 2: Provision of technical assistance, training and goods to support strengthening of Ministry of Transport (MOT) and AzerRoadService JSC (ARS) and carry out project implementation. This component will finance continued capacity development of ARS through provision of support to the development of standard documents for domestic investment projects, a Traffic Safety Strategy, a Road Development Master Plan, seminars and training to the investment divisions of the ARS, support to technical universities for curriculum development, equipment such as weighing scales and installation of automatic traffic counters.
Azerbaijan joined the World Bank in 1992.