Outgoing Finance and Development Planning Minister Amara M. Konneh signed for the Liberian Government, while Mr. Ghanem Sulaiman Al-Ghenaiman, Deputy Director General of the Kuwait Fund for Economic Development, who was accompanied by Mr.Thamer Al-Failakawi, Regional Manager of West African Countries at the Fund, signed on behalf of Kuwait Fund.
Speaking at the signing ceremony, Minister Konneh said the aim of the project is to enhance the economic and social development of the central region of Liberia and at the same time link Liberia with neighboring Guinea and Sierra Leone.
According to Konneh, the project consists of construction works to attain an all-weather asphalted road of an approximate length of about 81 kilometers and a width of 7.5 meters with a 1.5 meter shoulder on each side of the road between Gbarnga and Salayea.
Konneh indicated that the road project also includes construction of drainage facilities, reconstruction or rehabilitation of bridges, protection, safety and environmental protection facilities, as well as consultancy services to review the detailed design and supervision of construction, institutional support and land acquisition.
He noted that the project is expected to be completed by the end of 2019, stressing that the total cost of the project is estimated at about 9,095.51 billion Liberian dollars.
Konneh noted that the Abu Dhabi Fund Development will also provide the amount of about 4.41 million Kuwait Dinars which represents 16.8 percent of the total cost of the project and the Arab Bank for Economic Development in Africa the amount of 2.61 million Kuwait Dinars which also represents 10 percent the total cost of the project, while the government of Liberia will provide the financing of the of the rest of the project cost.
Minister Konneh emphasized that the loan will be for a period of 26 years, including a five-year grace period and will be amortized in 42 semi-annual installments.
He emphasized that the loan bears an interest rate of one percent in addition to the 0.6 per annum to cover administration costs and other expenses incurred in the implementation of the loan agreement.
“By concluding this agreement, it will be the third loan that the fund has provided to Liberia. The fund previously provided two loans amounting to about six million Kuwait Dinars equivalent to about 20 million United States dollars for financing the projects in the transport sector,” he said.
Minister Konneh pointed out that in addition the Fund has also provided Liberia with technical assistance of about 423,000 Kuwait Dinars equivalent to about US$1.44 million for financing feasibility studies of the project.