Yunnan Province (42 million inhabitants, 394,000 km2) is one of the least developed provinces in China, with GDP per capita equal to 64% of the national average. The GDP per capita of Baoshan Prefecture, where the project is located, is only equal to 43% of the national average. Almost a third of the 2.4 million inhabitants of this prefecture have an annual income of below EUR 150.
Road transport is the main means of transport in the province. However, the network continues to be of very low quality. Less than 2% of the network is made up of highways and roads up to international standards. In total, only 12% of all roads are paved.
The overall project comprises:
- The construction of a 77 km-long two-lane toll highway between Baoshan and Longling (missing section of the link between Kunming, the capital of the province, and the border with Burma). Four interchanges, 14.5 km of access roads, toll booths and tunnels have also been built;
- The rehabilitation of 294 km of secondary roads in the counties of Longyang and Longling (three sections: 120, 17 and 157 km);
- The supply of maintenance equipment for the roads, highways, toll booths and highway supervision;
- The expropriation and displacement plan for residents;
- The assistance of international consultants for the technical and institutional aspects.
This project has relieved congestion on the road section between Baoshan and Longling, reduced travel times and improved safety for users, increased the road transport capacity between Kumming and the border with Burma and, finally, improved access to markets and social services for poor populations. The report prepared by the Asian Development Bank’s Independent Evaluation Department makes a positive assessment of the project, particularly in terms of relevance and effectiveness. The smooth implementation of the project was also highlighted.
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