KABUL, AFGHANISTAN (11 April 2017) — The Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the Government of Afghanistan today unveiled a comprehensive Transport Sector Master Plan Update that will help Afghanistan develop its transport infrastructure covering roads, railways, civil aviation, urban transport, trade logistics, and other related operations. The estimated investment required to achieve the goals is about $26 billion from 2017-2036.  

“The updated plan recommends several urgently needed actions to help Afghanistan deliver on its wider development goals,” said Sean O’Sullivan, Director General of ADB’s Central and West Asia Department. “ADB remains committed to supporting the development of Afghanistan’s transport sector and is honored to support the government in this important undertaking.” 

The strategy focuses on Afghanistan’s transport system, regional connectivity, as well as the proper operation and maintenance of transportation infrastructure and sustainability. It examines current transport infrastructures and investments as well as future investment needs for transport system development. The plan also considers the internal connection between the mining industries, agricultural areas, and population centers.

“The expansion of a strong and efficient transport infrastructure is the backbone of connectivity. The master plan lays out the future path of transport infrastructure development and maintenance in the country,” said Mahmood Baligh, Minister of Public Works for Afghanistan. “The unique geographical location of Afghanistan as the connecting point between Middle East-China and Central Asia-South Asia gives the country the opportunity to become a regional connecting hub for trade, transit, and economic development.”

The Transport Sector Master Plan Update is a follow-up to the Road Sector Master Plan from 2006 to 2016, which ADB helped prepare. The plan set out a strategy for the development of a road network, envisaging a 5-year program period. The plan identified about 12,000 kilometers of priority projects, covering regional, national, and provincial roads. As of mid-2016, approximately 80% of the 2006 Road Sector Master Plan was completed.

Afghanistan is a founding member of ADB, and, to date, it has received over $4.7 billion in grants and loans, including more than $2.2 billion for road, railway, and airport projects. 

ADB, based in Manila, is dedicated to reducing poverty in Asia and the Pacific through inclusive economic growth, environmentally sustainable growth, and regional integration. Established in 1966, ADB is celebrating 50 years of development partnership in the region. It is owned by 67 members—48 from the region.

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