India and ADB signed 300 million US dollar loan agreement to improve connectivity in NE Region
The agreement was signed in New Delhi and the funds will be utilized to improve road connectivity in the North Bengal-North Eastern Region.
The Union Ministry of Finance and the Asian Development Bank (ADB) on 26 March 2015 signed a loan agreement for 300 million US dollars to improve road connectivity along the North Bengal-North Eastern (NB-NE) Region. The agreement was signed in New Delhi.
The funds will be utilized to improve road connectivity and efficiency of the international trade corridors by expanding roads in NB-NE region of the country.
Tarun Bajaj, Joint Secretary (Multilateral Institutions) in the Department of Economic Affairs of Ministry of Finance and Teresa Kho, ADB’S country Director in India, signed the Agreement on behalf of the Government of India and ADB respectively.
Details of the Agreement
• The loan is the first tranche under 500 million US dollar South Asian Sub-Regional Economic Cooperation Road Connectivity Investment Program (SRCIP). Under this multi-tranche program, about 500 km of roads will be constructed in the NB-NE region.
• The funds will be utilized to construct two national highways totaling about 150 km in West Bengal and State roads totaling about 180 km in Manipur, which will be extended till the Myanmar Border.
• The loan amount makes-up nearly 71 percent of the total project cost of about 425 million US dollars with the central and state governments providing counterpart finance of about 125 million US dollars.
• The loan has a 25-year repayment term, including a five-year grace period with an annual interest rate determined in accordance with ADB's LIBOR (London Interbank Offered Rate)-based lending facility.
• The project is expected to be completed by 31 December 2021.
SRCIP is a strategic initiative that aims to achieve regional integration among the members of the South Asia Sub regional Economic Cooperation (SASEC) group by improving road connectivity within the NB-NE Region in India. The members of this group are Bangladesh, Bhutan, India and Nepal.