YEREVAN (Arka)— Armenia’s Ministry of Transport and Communications signed an agreement today with Chinese CinoHydro Corporation on construction of a section of North-South Transport Corridor. The section is stretching from Lanjik community to Armenia’s second largest town of Gyumri. The cost of this section is estimated at 74 million euros, the ministry said in statement today. The Chinese company is to build this 27.5 km-long section as part of the 3rd tranche of the investment program.
The section’s construction will be financed by a loan from the European Investment Bank, a European Commission grant and Armenian government’s co-financing. The construction is to kick off in 2016 March and end in 3 years.
Under the agreement, the Chinese company will use locally-manufactured building materials. Some 70% of labor force will be Armenian workers, the ministry said.
The goal of North-South Transport Corridor project is to upgrade Armenia’s main corridor road as part of a broader thrust to improve connectivity, and boost trade, growth and livelihood opportunities in the Caucasus and Central Asia sub-regions.
Funds are being released by the Asian Development Bank periodically through a multi-tranche financing facility. The transport corridor will stretch from the southern Armenian town of Meghri, on the border with Iran, to Bavra in the north on the border with Georgia. The North-South transport corridor will enable Armenia to mitigate the effects of the blockade imposed by Azerbaijan and Turkey.
Currently the construction of the road is underway from Artashat to Ashtarak and from Ashtarak to Talin. The ministry plans also the implementation of separate smaller projects at various sections of the road in order to end the construction both in southern and northern directions by 2019.