This initiative plays a crucial role in enhancing transportation effectiveness within rural regions, promoting greater agricultural output, and creating job opportunities.
On Monday, the Government of Bangladesh and the Asian Development Bank (ADB) entered into two loan agreements totaling $490 million. These agreements aim to enhance integrated urban governance and improve rural road connectivity within the country. These agreements are intended to facilitate the realization of objectives related to integrated urban governance and the enhancement of rural road connectivity across the country.
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According to press releases from ADB, Sharifa Khan, representing the Economic Relations Division, and Edimon Ginting, the ADB Country Director for Bangladesh, were the signatories of both agreements on behalf of their respective parties.
ADB Boosts Urban Development for 7.6 Million in Bangladesh
The funding from ADB, allocated for the enhancement of urban governance and infrastructure, is set to contribute to the realization of integrated and enduring urban development, ultimately enhancing the quality of life in 88 municipalities. This initiative will bring benefits to a significant population of 7.6 million individuals in Bangladesh.
The program, backed by $300 million in financing, is geared towards fortifying urban governance structures and providing necessary capital investments. These investments will facilitate the enhanced provision of municipal services, aligning with Bangladesh’s Municipal Development Plan.
ADB Director: Urban Sustainability Key to Bangladesh’s Middle-Income Goal
Highlighting the significance of climate-resilient and sustainable urban development in propelling Bangladesh toward achieving middle-income status by 2030, the ADB Country Director underlined its crucial role.
According to Edimon Ginting, the acceleration of well-balanced urban growth in Bangladesh will be propelled by factors such as-
- improved municipal services
- heightened capacity
- enhanced infrastructure and
- governance, as well as the active involvement of the community.
ADB Loan Boosts Municipal Governance and Inclusion
With the aim of enhancing inclusive municipal governance through reinforced institutional capabilities, this results-based loan is designed to assist in creating and executing urban governance improvement action plans for each participating municipality. Additionally, it will involve the digitization of monitoring and evaluation systems, encompassing revenue management.
The loan’s scope extends to facilitating targeted measures that encourage women’s leadership roles. It will also strive for fairness through allocated budget provisions to address the specific requirements of women and vulnerable groups. Moreover, the adoption of guidelines related to climate-resilient and socially inclusive public spaces and facilities is also part of the program.
Enhanced Infrastructure and Resilience at Core of ADB Initiatives
A significant expansion of infrastructure is on the horizon as a minimum of 900 kilometers (km) of stormwater drainage receives upgrading, while 1,500 km of roads undergo rehabilitation. Moreover, public facilities will be either rejuvenated or established, with a focus on catering to the needs of women and vulnerable populations.
This initiative takes a decisive stride in bolstering urban resilience. It accomplishes this by amplifying efforts towards crafting and executing risk-informed master plans and investments. Notably, climate financing will compose 60% of the entire loan amount.
Meanwhile, an additional infusion of $190 million in loans is allocated for the ongoing Rural Connectivity Improvement Project. This extension will usher in upgrades for rural roads, enhancing productivity in agricultural zones and bolstering socioeconomic hubs in rural Bangladesh.
Edimon Ginting remarked, “This project will not only elevate access to essential services and economic prospects in rural regions but also enhance community resistance to climate shifts and natural calamities.”
The ADB Country Director underscored the paramount significance of this project. It’s not solely about expanding rural road networks; it’s about ensuring they are fortified against climate-induced challenges and natural disasters.
Rural Project Boosts Transport, Agriculture, and Jobs; Extended by Additional Funding
This initiative also plays a crucial role in enhancing transportation effectiveness within rural regions, promoting greater agricultural output, and creating job opportunities.
Since gaining approval in November 2018, the project has achieved notable success by upgrading around 1,700 kilometers of rural roads. It has additionally strengthened the capabilities of rural infrastructure organizations and enhanced the overall planning of rural road networks. Impressively, over 900 kilometers of rural roads have been included beyond the initial target since 2020.
The supplementary funding will continue to advance the improvement efforts, focusing on an additional 1,350 kilometers of rural roads. These enhancements will encompass designs that prioritize climate resilience and incorporate heightened safety features.