GONDAR –THE ETHIOPIAN HERALD Newspaper 17 April 2016: Awarding road infrastructure construction to local contractors is boosting their technical, institutional and financial capability. Their role and contribution is mushrooming. The experience they garner in the sector has enabled them to compete in several construction bids.
Recently, a group of journalists had the chance to visit a road construction projects underway in a very high terrain and mountainous area around Ras Dashen by local contractors.
The 73 kilometer Buhait -Dil yibza road construction project is being carried out by Satcon Construction Company, the local one and 65 kilometer Debrk Buhait construction route by Ecore Local Construction Company. Besides, the consultancy and supper vision work is carried out by Icon Consulting Engineering Private Limited Company, the local one.
While briefing visiting journalists at the spot, the Ethiopian Road Authority Communication Directorate Director Samson Wondimu said that the Debark-Buhait Dil yibza 138-km new asphalt road construction project underway with an outlay of 1.6 billion Birr in North Gonder Zone.
Samson said that the projects totally owned by local contractors, and consulted and supervised by local companies. Such engagement has enabled the local companies to capacitate their overall capacity thereby contributing to the national development.
According to Samson, the government has attached due attention to local contractors capacity building with a view to upgrading their competitiveness at global level. The Debark-Buhait-Dil yibza project is exemplary in this regard.
He further said that currently many local contractors and consultancy companies are involving in various road construction projects thereby strengthening their institutional,technical and financial capacities.
Completed some 36 km of the project, upon completion, the road project would interlink the northern Gondar woredas such as Debark, Janamora- Dilyibza and others.
Most importantly, the route will also help to enhance tourism activities since it is adjacent to Semien Mountain National Park. The environs is a potential area of tourism business, according to the director. It also helps reduce the transaction cost of agricultural products in the area to its environs.
Buhait-Dilyibza Road Project Manager Eng. Abraham Teklay on his part said that constructing road at such very mountainous and difficult terrain is challenging. However, his company is aggressively working and the project is nearing completion.
The manager said that the tremendous experience from the project has build the confidence of the company to compete in other construction bids.
According to Eng. Abraham, the topography of the project area was challenging with the highest grade elevation (4195.55 meter) above sea level while the lowest grade elevation is (2501.911 meter) . The project directly benefits 13 kebeles and creates job opportunities for 1,000 people.
Some of the residents living in Dilyibza town approached by this reporter said that the construction of the road helps them access the provision of health and education facilities.
BY ABEBE WOLDEGIORGIS