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Saturday May 18, 2024

‘Breakthrough’ of the Nagdhunga Main Tunnel

2024 Apr 16, 7:40,

With the ‘breakthrough’ of the Nagdhunga Main Tunnel, a new milestone is witnessed in the Nepal -Japan cooperation partnership.

Until yesterday, JICA has had long engagement in the development of transport sector by Grant Aid, of which, one of the notable projects is Sindhuli Road, connecting Kathmandu with eastern Terai. Similarly, JICA has also extended technical cooperation for transport sector such as urban transport management in Kathmandu, etc.

As the first Japanese ODA Loan Project for transport sector in Nepal, JICA started its support for “Nagdhunga Tunnel Construction Project” with a concessional loan assistance amounting to 16.63 billion Japanese Yen. The Loan Agreement was signed in 2016 and the construction work commenced in 2019. Nagdhunga Tunnel will be the country's first mountain road tunnel that aims to improve the road condition around Nagdhunga pass, thereby contributing to achieve the smooth transportation network and improve commercial activities between Kathmandu and other principal areas in Nepal. This tunnel has two lanes with a total length of 2.69 km, with all essential tunnel facilities such as evacuation tunnel, access road including flyover, tool booth. It is expected to ease the traffic congestion along Nagdhunga-Naubise road section once it comes into operation. Likewise, it will also reduce air pollution, save traffic time and reduce traffic accidents.

After today’s breakthrough, it will take almost one more year to complete the entire construction and thereafter tunnel operation.

Along with its breakthrough, Nagdhunga tunnel also witnesses a 'breakthrough' in terms of enhancing Nepali efficiency as this is the first time Nepalese manpower has been mobilized in the construction works of a highway tunnel. The project is exemplary in terms of knowledge transfer for highway tunnel construction.

An official ceremony was held today for celebrating the breakthrough of main tunnel in the presence ofPrime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal ‘Prachanda’,  Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Physical Infrastructure and Transport  Raghubir Mahaseth, Ambassador of Japan to Nepal KIKUTA Yutaka and officials from Department of Roads, Embassy of Japan and JICA Nepal.

On the occasion, OKUBO Akimitsu, Chief Representative of JICA Nepal, extended his congratulations to the Government of Nepal including the Ministry of Finance, the Ministry of Physical Infrastructure and Transport and the Department of Roads, the Consultant Nippon Koei and its partners, the contractor Hazama Ando Corporation and the sub-contractors for their excellent work, enormous efforts and dedication for the successful breakthrough of Nagdhunga Tunnel.


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