Minister Shaw to Sign Agreement with China’s Exim Bank for Highway Project

Photo: Michael Sloley Finance and Public Service Minister, Hon. Audley Shaw, addressing Wednesday’s (February 8) Diplomatic Corps Ministerial briefing at The Jamaica Pegasus hotel in New Kingston. The briefing was part of activities organised by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade to mark Diplomatic Week 2017 from February 5 to 10 under the theme: ‘Growth through Partnerships’.

Story Highlights

  • Finance and Public Service Minister, Hon. Audley Shaw, will travel to the People’s Republic of China next week to sign an agreement with that country’s EXIM Bank for the construction of the southeast coastal highway project at a cost of approximately US$384 million.
  • Mr. Shaw said the new highway will run from Harbour View in Kingston through Morant Bay in St. Thomas and on to Port Antonio, Portland.
  • The Government allocated $40 million in the 2016-17 Estimates of Expenditure to begin preparatory work on the project.

Finance and Public Service Minister, Hon. Audley Shaw, will travel to the People’s Republic of China next week to sign an agreement with that country’s EXIM Bank for the construction of the southeast coastal highway project at a cost of approximately US$384 million.

Mr. Shaw said the new highway will run from Harbour View in Kingston through Morant Bay in St. Thomas and on to Port Antonio, Portland.

It will include a four-lane thoroughfare running from Harbour View to Bull Bay, which will be reduced to three lanes and then two lanes as it continues to Port Antonio.

The Minister was addressing diplomats during a briefing at The Jamaica Pegasus hotel in New Kingston on Wednesday, February 8.

Cabinet, last year, gave approval for the Government to enter into contract with China Harbour Engineering Company Limited (CHEC) to undertake the project following a review of the specifications.

The Government allocated $40 million in the 2016-17 Estimates of Expenditure to begin preparatory work on the project.

This provision was earmarked to undertake surveys to identify parcels of land; an environmental impact assessment (EIA); and for any review of designs.

Mr. Shaw indicated that the Government re-scoped the original cost consequent on a review of the initial plans for the building of a toll road between Harbour View and Morant Bay.

“We determined that the economic feasibility wasn’t there for that. We re-scoped it and half of the money will now be used to build that southeast coastal highway and the other half…to extend the east-west toll road from May Pen (Clarendon) to Williamsfield (Manchester),” he advised.

The briefing was part of activities marking Diplomatic Week from February 5 to 10 under the theme: ‘Growth through Partnerships’.

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