……..as sod turned for construction of Linden- Mabura Hill road
The mining town of Linden and by extension Region 10, will see limitless economic opportunities when the road from Linden to Lethem is completed. On Friday, $US190 million contract was inked for the first phase, to be executed by Brazilian company, Construtora Queiroz Galvao S.A.
The project which is being touted as transformational has been in the works for decades, said Minister within the Office of the President with responsibility for Finance, Dr. Ashni Singh. In his feature address, he spoke of the limitless economic opportunities across various sectors that will benefit Linden. The town, which has always been dubbed the gateway to the interior, will see avenues for growth in agriculture, trade, tourism and mining.
“Our vision for Guyana is one where if you are a farmer producing produce in Linden, you must be able to load your produce up and drive it unimpeded to Lethem and beyond to sell it… if you are manufacturing, any item you must be able to sell as easily in Georgetown and Linden as you must be able to sell in Bonfim and Boa Vista,” Minister Singh stated.
The road is expected to triple the market that farmers and manufacturers are used to.
“This project, as large and as important as it is, is not a standalone project, it is part of an integrated plan for a more prosperous Guyana. It is not just a road that is standing out there, it is connected with other things. Of course, it is about improved trade through Guyana, of course it is about generating economic activity in areas such as logistics and tourism,” the Minister explained.
Minister of Public Works, Bishop Juan Edghill, in his remarks, also highlighted the investment opportunities that are now presented to the people of Linden with the construction of the road. The people of Linden, he said, should be positioning themselves for the benefits that will be derived upon completion of the road.
“I want you to envisage 100 containerised trucks per day minimum coming through from Brazil, they have to come through Linden, you better get your restaurants open. There will have to be fuel stations, there will have to be service, there will have to have rest stops.
“You know if you have 100 trucks coming through with goods, that is only the business, but what about a tourist? You do not have enough hotel rooms in Linden to accommodate tourists that will be coming as a result of this road. It is time for people to make investments.”
Minister within the Ministry, Deodat Indar shared similar sentiments.
“It is not just a road, this will derive benefit for miners who travel this route, it will derive benefit for people in the forestry sector who use this route, it will derive benefit for people who are engaged in agriculture and much more other benefits that we intend to bring to Guyana by connecting the township to Lethem,” Minister Indar stated.
Meanwhile, British High Commissioner to Guyana, H.E Jane Miller hailed the project as transformational.
Mayor and Deputy Mayor Waneka Arrindell and Wainwight Bethune; Permanent Secretary to the Ministry of Public Works, Vladim Persaud; Chief Executive Officer of GO-Invest, Dr. Peter Ramsaroop; representatives from the Caribbean Development Bank; representatives from the construction company and other leaders of Region 10 were also present at the ceremony.
The all-weather road will be 121 kilometres long and 7.2 metres wide with a two- lane carriageway. It will feature a shared cycle and pedestrian lane measuring 2 metres wide, along with 10 bus stops outfitted with ramps for persons with disabilities. A number of bridges and culverts will be replaced. Some 123 lights will also be installed along with nine vehicle rest areas.
Over $450 M in road contracts awarded in Region 10
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