Myanmar, B’desh to jointly build highway

Yangon, August 22:

Myanmar and Bangladesh will finalise a draft agreement here in September on a proposed cross-border highway project that is expected to strengthen economic and trade ties in South and South-East Asia, reports Xinhua.

Once the draft is adopted, construction of the 133-km highway that will link Buthidaung in Myanmar’s Rakhine state and Bangladesh’s Ramu in Chittagong province would start by October, the Myanmar Times reported quoting sources in the Bangla-desh embassy. The memorandum of understanding (MoU) to build the highway was signed in April last year and funding is being sought from the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and China. According to sources, the road, to be constructed in two phases at a cost of $156 million, will stretche from Taungbro to Kyauktaw of Myanmar via Ramu-Gundom of Cox’s Bazar in Bangladesh.

The Bangladesh government has already constructed the 43-km road in the first phase, of which 20-km is on the Bangladesh side and 23-km on the Myanmar side, at a cost of $27 million. The total cost will be borne by Bangla-desh, the sources said.