Treasury Minister Patrick Pruaitch signed the deal with the Asian Development Bank’s Country Director Marcelo Minc on Thursday October 6, 2016.
The loan is part of the ongoing US$400 million (K1, 196.17m) multi-tranche financing facility road program that was approved since 2008.
These programs will address 2,500km of major national, provincial and some district roads and improve the capacity of National Roads Authority (NRA) and Department of Works to deliver quality road infrastructure.
The ADB Tranche (I) program saw the completed upgrade and sealing of Mendi-Kandep (Enga) and Laiagam-Pogera (Enga).
The Tranche (II) program covers the contracts financing of the ongoing Mendi-Tambu (SHP), Kotna-Lapramp (WHP) and Ialibu-Kagua (SHP) roads.
Pruaitch said the highlands region has been the food bowl of the country and host most of the country’s mineral resource deposit including the PNG LNG project and therefore it deserves the attention and support that the government is providing.
He said the project will greatly increase the coverage and ensure safer access for the populace region in the country compared to the other three regions.
“This does not go to show that other regions like Southern, Momase and Islands are missing out.
“The 3 regions also have various programs that are progressing well with the help of the development partners going forward.”
He added that the Tranche (III) of the Highlands Region Roads Improvement Investment Program (HRRIIP) is very important to the social and economic development of this country and its people.
He said the government’s long-term Vision 2050, its Development Strategic Plan (PNGSDP) 2010-2030, the Medium Term Development Plan (MTDP) 2011-2015 and the National Transport Strategy (NTS) 2011-2030, identify Transport Sector Development, including the improvement of existing road transport infrastructure, as national priority program in the transport sector.