ArmInfo.The Government of Armenia is making every effort to complete the construction of the North-South Road Corridor Investment Program, envisaged in the Tranche-1 and Tranche-2, on time. Armenian Minister of Transport, Communications and IT Hakob Arshakyan told journalists on February 8 after a government meeting.
According to the Minister, the construction work of the Ashtarak-Talin road within the framework of the Tranche - 2 stage of the North-South Road Corridor Investment Program slowed down a bit. In the near future this will be announced. Regarding the Tranche-3 (sections of the Talin-Lanjik and Lanjik-Gyumri roads), active negotiations are being held with Chinese friends and donor organizations.
As the Minister pointed out, the pace of work has tripled with the efficient efforts of the Ministry. "Initially, before the change of government, the pace of work was too slow for various reasons. But we will continue our efforts to complete the work on time," Arshakyan said. . The slowdown of work in the framework of Tranche -2 is associated with problems encountered by the contractor, he said. In particular, the general contractor of the "Corsan Corviam" Spanish project wished to carry out the work with the help of subcontractors, as a result of which a number of technical problems were identified.
In addition, as the Minister recalled, it is not a secret to anyone that there were serious problems with the quality of the work performed, both in the framework of Tranche-1 (segments Yerevan-Artashat and Yerevan-Ashtarak) and Tranche-2. But, since the issue is under the jurisdiction of the investigating authorities, Hakob Arshakyan refrained from commenting.
As for the construction in the framework of Tranche-4, which will be conducted on the Kajaran-Agarak segment, then, as the head of the Ministry of Transport pointed out, it is impossible to make predictions about the start of construction today, since all efforts have been made to implement part of the project in a southerly direction. This section will cut the road for 55 km and save time for 2 hours. "The main work is now concentrated in the south, where it is necessary to build a tunnel and bridges.
The cost of the tunnel and the three bridges will be $ 350-400 million, " Arshakyan said. To the question of ArmInfo, according to current estimates, how much the whole project is estimated, Hakob Arshakyan said:" I can only say that the initial estimate of the project cost is approximately $ 900 million, is erroneous. "
To recall, the project to establish a North-South transport corridor with a total length of 556 km will allow access to the Black Sea and European countries through Armenia (Meghri-Kapan-Goris-Yerevan-Ashtarak- Gyumri-Bavra) and Georgia. The investment program is aimed at providing communication of the north (border with Georgia) and southern Armenia (border with Iran) through transport communications that meet high international standards, and access to world markets. Tenders for the construction of the first few lines of the route were won by the Spanish "Corsan Corviam", the last tender (for the Landzhik-Gyumri section in the north of Armenia) by the Chinese "Sinohydro Corporation" company. With the latter, the Ministry of Transport and Communications of Armenia signed a contract in May 2016 amounting to about $ 60 million in the framework of the Tranche-3 of the investment program. The Kajaran-Agarak project will be the fourth section of the North-South project. Within the framework of the project, it is planned to rebuild the arterial roads of Armenia from the Iranian to the Georgian border. Partially they will be rebuilt from asphalt to concrete, partially expanded. And in some areas they will build straight stretches instead of roundabout turns in the mountains. Construction of the corridor was originally planned to be completed in 2019. Meanwhile, on September 4, at a meeting with journalists, former Minister of Transport, Communications and Information Technologies of the Republic of Armenia Ashot Hakobyan stated that the implementation of the investment program for building the North-South road corridor can take from 5 to 10 years. According to him, the timing of the project will depend on funding, pace and quality of the program. According to him, the construction will cost $ 2 billion, since only its southern section, between the cities of Artashat and Meghri, according to preliminary estimates, will cost about $ 1.5 billion. Meanwhile, 6 years ago, in September 2012, when the construction of the highway, the amount that representatives of the Armenian government called was more than half as much - $ 962 million