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Nepal’s North-South corridor projects make significant progress

KATHMANDU: At a time when the total expenditure of the government under capital headings is low, the North-South Trade Road Improvement Project Directorate has made 86 per cent progress in its capital expenditure by the end of the first nine months (mid-April) of the current fiscal year.
The project directorate is looking after the construction of the three North-South Corridor Projects—the Koshi Corridor, Kaligandaki Corridor and Karnali Corridor road projects and five trade road projects.
“By mid-April, we have spent around 86 per cent of the total capital budget provided to the directorate to construct three north-south corridor projects and upgrade the five trade road projects,” said project director Ram Hari Pokharel.
He said that most of projects have made a remarkable progress on both physical as well as financial sides.
“The progress in capital expenditure is such that we need additional budget in most of the projects by the end of the current fiscal year,” he said.
Out of the total capital budget of Rs. 5.11 billion, Rs. 4.5 billion has already been spent in these projects, he said.
He said that the data was related to only the section of road being constructed by the directorate, and it did not include the portions which had been constructed by the Nepali Army.
The Nepali Army is constructing 80 kilometre Ridhi-Maldhunga section of Kaligandaki Corridor and 150 kilometre section in Khulalu-Simikot part of Karnali Corridor.
Pokharel said that the biggest progress was achieved in the Trade Road Improvement Project in which 94.33 per cent of the total budget allocated had been spent in the first nine months of current fiscal year.
Out of the total allocated budget of Rs. 3.21 billion, Rs. 3.02 billion has been spent by the Mid-April, he said.
Five projects under the Trade Road Improvement Projects are –40 kilometre long Jatahi-Janakpur, 41 kilometre Rani-Itahari-Dharan, 31 kilometre Pathalaya- Birgunj, 28 kilometre Butwal-Belahiya and 14 kilometre Monapur-Attariya.
The project is upgrading all these l roads of trade importance to six-lane.
Individually, Rani-Itahari-Dharan Road Improvement Project has made the highest progress of 98.8 per cent in capital expenditure followed by Butwal-Belahiya and Birjung-Pathalaiya roads with 95.9 per cent and 88.35 per cent progress respectively.
Similarly, 82.4 per cent progress was made in Kaligandaki Corridor, 55.6 per cent in Karnali Corridor and 50.2 per cent in Koshi Corridor project under the capital expenditure by the end of the first nine months.

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