Thailand, int'l banks sign loan agreement

16:29, June 11, 2010      

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Thailand's government on Friday signed a contract to borrow loans worth of 156 million U.S dollars from the World Bank (WB) and the Asian Development Bank (ADB), the Thai News Agency (TNA) reported.

The loans will be used to finance Highway-Expansion Project, which is not only aimed to strengthen Thailand's economic development, but is also to bridge Thailand with neighboring Laos, Myanmar, and Vietnam.

According to a news release by ADB, the Greater Mekong Sub- region (GMS) Highway Expansion Project will expand 178 kilometers of two-lane national roads in north and central Thailand into four- lane highways.

The project will "support ongoing efforts to boost travel, tourism and trade in GMS, while reducing traffic accidents fatalities", said Asian Development Bank.

ADB's loan covers 43% of the total cost of the project, which will upgrade and expand the Phanom Sarkham to Sa Kaeo highway in central Thailand and a stretch from Phitsanulok to Lom Sak in the north, helping to reduce passenger and freight operating costs by 10 percent and travel times by 15 percent, as well as spurring new trade and economic growth.



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