ADDIS ABABA - Ethiopian Road Authority (ERA) has signed twelve road construction project agreements worth 19.9 billion Birr with six local and four foreign firms yesterday.
The construction of the road projects covers 825.23 kilometres and is expected to be completed between one to four years.
Habtamu Tegegne, Director General of ERA speaking during the signing ceremony said that the road projects will address the communities' age-long infrastructural questions. Moreover, the projects will bring economic benefits and contribute to the poverty reduction plan of the government by creating and facilitating movement.
This year, the authority has a plan to reach construction agreements of 91 road projects. About 46 project agreements have already been signed and went operational.
Since the identification of the first case of COVID-19, the authority has managed to reach 28 road projects. Thirty local and sixteen foreign companies took part in the construction of road projects, he said.
The government is committed to undertaking extensive road infrastructure to increase the country's road coverage. It has so far signed various projects worth some 76 billion Birr.
According to the government's plan, the authority has been working to integrate the horn of Africa through road infrastructure, Habtamu pointed out.
Once completed, the road projects would strengthen the economy and social interaction of communities between states, zones, woredas and districts of the country as well as with neighbouring countries. Preparations are underway to launch the construction of special road projects after 2022, he underlined.
The road construction projects include small and high drainages, culverts and highways. Construction companies' representatives have affirmed their readiness to complete the construction on time. The construction costs of the ten and two projects will be covered by the government and the World Bank respectively.