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Signing of an Agreement to amend a Project Agreement for an additional US$ 750 Million to Finance Al Batinah Expressway Project from the Grant allocated by the Government of the State of Kuwait within the Framework of the Program of the Countries of the Cooperation Council for the Arab States of the Gulf (GCC) to Finance Development Projects in the Sultanate of Oman
An Agreement to amend the Project Agreement Number 63/1 was signed today in Rabat, Kingdom of Morocco, between the Government of the Sultanate of Oman and Kuwait Fund for Arab Economic Development (the Fund) during the meeting of Arab Financial Institutions and the 46 Annual Meeting of the Board of Governors of the Arab Fund for Economic and Social Development, whereby the Fund will allocate an additional US$ 750 million to contribute in financing Al Batinah Expressway Project in the Sultanate of Oman. The Project Agreement had been signed on 12th November 2014 for financing the said Project in the amount of US$ 1,750,000,000, which will bring the total financing amount of the Project to US$ 2,500,000,000.
The Grant is considered within the Framework Agreement signed on 27/05/2013 between the Government of the Sultanate of Oman and Kuwait Fund for Arab Economic Development for the utilization of a grant amounting to US$ 2.5 billion allocated by the Government of the State of Kuwait to the Sultanate of Oman for financing Development Projects. The Government of the State of Kuwait entrusted the administration of the Grant to the Kuwait Fund. The Grant is being made within the framework of the Program of the Gulf Cooperation Council (G.C.C.) for development projects in the member states.
The Agreement pertaining to the Project was signed on behalf of the Sultanate of Oman by His Excellency Mr. Darwish Bin Ismail Ben Ali Al-Balushi, Minister for Financial Affairs whereas Mr. Abdulwahab Al-Bader, Director-General of Kuwait Fund for Arab Economic Development, signed the Agreement on behalf of the Fund.
The project aims to contribute to the economic and social development of the Sultanate of Oman by meeting the increasing demand on the transport of passengers and goods between the capital Muscat and the borders with the United Arab Emirates. It also contributes to facilitating the traffic in the areas located on the sides of the parallel Batinah coastal road and enhancing the traffic safety in addition to saving of vehicle operating costs and reducing travel time.
The Project consists of the construction of a 270-Kms asphaltic expressway of eight lanes (four in each direction) including overpasses, in addition to the construction of 250-Kms linking roads of four-lanes (two in each direction) connecting adjacent localities to the expressway. The Project also includes weighing stations, pedestrian overcrossings, rest areas and the necessary consultancy service.
The total cost of the Project is estimated at about US$ 2.8 billion, of which the Kuwait Government Grant, amounting to US$ 2.5 billion, represents about 89% of the total Project estimated cost, allocated over a period of ten years as of 2012.
By extending this Grant, the Fund will have provided US$ 2.5 billion representing 100% of the State of Kuwait's total share of the programmes designated to the Sultanate of Oman.
It worth mentioning that Kuwait Fund has extended to the Sultanate of Oman 23 Loans totalling to about Kuwaiti Dinars 191 million, equivalent of about U.S. Dollars 649 million to finance projects in various sectors. In addition, one Technical Assistance totalling about Kuwaiti Dinars 142,000, equivalent to about U.S. Dollars 482,000, was extended to finance the preparation of the technical and economic feasibility studies for a the Improvement Livestock Production Project .