Wednesday, April 24, 2024
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Feasibility study for road upgrades underway

A two week feasibility study for the Vanua Levu Road Upgrade project is underway.

The project is funded by the Government of the People’s Republic of China,

A Chinese technical team is conducting studies in parts of Bua and Cakaudrove.

Prime Minister Sitiveni Rabuka and China’s Ambassador to Fiji, His Excellency Zhou Jian visited parts of the road project site where they met with the feasibility study team to discuss their preliminary findings and estimates.

The China Aid project will focus on the maintenance and upgrade of over 80 kilometres of rural roads, including parts of the Nabouwalu – Makolei Road in Bua, part of the Natewa-West Coast Road and the Nabalebale – Naviavia/Dawara Roads in Cakaudrove.

“This project prioritises areas requiring upgrading, such as this portion of Vanua Levu previously overlooked. The project seamlessly continues the Fiji Road Upgrading Programme (FRUP) started after independence by the Alliance Government, which was continued by the SVT Coalition in the 1990s and SDL Government in the early 2000s. This project connects the previous iterations of FRUP,” Rabuka said.

“In the past, the Chiefs and Leaders of Cakaudrove politely deferred road development to areas facing greater challenges in other parts of Fiji. However, it’s now time to address neglect and ensure we also improve road conditions here.”

The Prime Minister expressed the Government’s appreciation to the people and Government of China for its continued assistance and support.

“China and Fiji share a long-standing partnership. As we embark on this journey together, let us work towards a brighter future for every Fijian family.”

With an estimated budget of FJD $300 million, the road upgrade works will be the flagship project under China’s Global Development Initiative (GDI).

The 80km road upgrading project will see the construction of 22 bridges that will improve the lives of the residents of 61 communities who live along the roads being upgraded, as well as the students and teachers of 15 schools in these communities, while also improving access to medical facilities, as well as campuses of the University of the South Pacific and Fiji National University.

The road upgrade will also stimulate development of tourism, renewable energy projects including hydro power facilities and the transport and movement of people including through the planned Nabouwalu township which is the main transport link to Viti Levu.

Ilaitia Ravuwai
Ilaitia Ravuwai
Journalist | news@fijilive.com

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