YANGON, MYANMAR (12 November 2015) — The Asian Development Bank has approved a $100 million loan to improve a 66.4 kilometer section of road connecting the towns of Eindu and Kawkareik in Kayin state, the missing link of the Greater Mekong Subregion East-West Corridor.
Developing transport infrastructure in tandem with policies and procedures for crossing borders and promoting trade has been central to efforts to interconnect the Greater Mekong Subregion countries.
Transport lies at the heart of Greater Mekong Subregion cooperation. The development of physical infrastructure, such as roads and bridges, in tandem with policies and procedures for crossing borders and developing trade along key routes, has been central to efforts to forge a truly interconnected subregion.
Physically connecting the countries of the subregion was one of the first initiatives of the GMS program when it was founded in 1992. The countries of the Greater Mekong Subregion have acknowledged that in order to cooperate in trade, tourism, and investment, and to realize the other benefits of the region, they must expand the road links and border crossings that connect them.
This is being done through the development of “economic corridors”, which are geographic areas, often along major highways, where a variety of development projects are undertaken to maximize their development benefits. This might include projects involving infrastructure, laws and regulations, market development, and the improvement of urban centers. Economic corridors bring a wide range of benefits, far beyond what single projects deliver in terms of development impact.
The three main GMS corridors—the East–West, North–South and Southern economic corridors—have improved the lives of millions of people in the Greater Mekong Subregion. These corridors are being enhanced with secondary roads that extend their benefits to nearby communities most in need, and other roads that link to strategic seaports in the subregion. The regulatory details of how people and goods can best move along these corridors are also currently being worked out.
Timely availability of information, data, and indicators at the country and project levels allows for the measurement of progress – the achievement of policy objectives, as well as impacts and outcomes of target-driven projects.
Better cross-border transportation and electricity links are central pillars of both the Greater Mekong Subregion program and Asian Development Bank's work in support of Cambodia's development.
The Eighteenth Meeting of the Subregional Transport Forum (STF-18) was held in Ho Chi Minh City, Viet Nam. The Forum was jointly organized by the Ministry of Transport (MOT) of Viet Nam and the Asian Development Bank (ADB).
The Nineteenth Meeting of the Subregional Transport Forum (STF-19) was held in Phnom Penh, Cambodia.
This assessment indicates a mixed performance for the Transport Sector Strategy Study, 2006-2015 based on an assessment of the overarching goals upon which the study was based.