The Inter-American Development Bank has approved a loan of us$61.5 million to improve access by road to the South Atlantic Autonomous Region.
From a statement issued by the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB):
The Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) has announced the approval of a loan of US $61.5 million to Nicaragua to improve the quality of transport services and national and international integration of the country.
The main objectives of the project are to improve access by road to the South Atlantic Autonomous Region (RAAS) and reduce travel times and costs of freight and passengers along the corridor Gateada-UN-Bluefields.
Nicaragua has the lowest road density in Central America. Due to the shortage of roads and poor road conditions, the RAAS is relatively isolated from the rest of Nicaragua and other Central American countries. In rural areas, lack of connections with routes and ports is an obstacle to economic growth. It also restricts the population’s access to services such as health, education and public safety, helping to perpetuate poverty.
The project will provide a paved all-weather road to the RAAS. It is expected that through the project, travel time for passengers using the corridor will drop by about 40% and 71% for freight.
The operation consists of a loan of US $30.75 million over 30 years with ordinary capital resources of the IDB, with a grace period of six years and interest based on LIBOR plus a loan of US $30.75 million over 40 years from the Fund for Special Operations of the IDB, with a grace period of 40 years and fixed interest rate of 0.25 percent.