This money will go to widening the Kampala Northern Bypass (Phase II) and construction of the Mbarara Bypass. After signing the project agreement at his office last week, Works minister Abraham Byandala pledged to ensure good work.
"We appreciate this support and our mandate is to ensure value for money. This shall boost the 28 million Euros that was previously earmarked by the government for this project," Byandala said. The works are expected to commence in March 2014. The agreement complements the 364.2m Euros, already committed in 2008 to construct the Ugandan side of the East African northern corridor.
The corridor links Burundi, DRC, Rwanda, Uganda and South Sudan, to Mombasa. The European Investment Bank vice president for lending in sub-Saharan Africa, Pim van Ballekom, pledged more support in future. "Poor transport connections hinder economic development and regional integration in East Africa and the European Investment Bank appreciates the importance of upgrading key road links in the region," he said.
The executive director of the Uganda National Roads Authority, Eng Ssebbugga Kimeze, explained that the works at Mbarara would involve the construction of a bypass of 14km and the rehabilitation of the existing road to national road standards. "This funding shall be vital in completing the Mbarara and Kampala projects which will eventually lead to reduced time of travel for long-distance goods transporters," Ssebbuga said. The investments in Kampala, on the other hand, involve an upgrade of the Northern Bypass to a 21km dual carriageway.