Malawi government, the European Investment Bank (EIB) and the European Union has today signed a financing agreement worth 139 million euros (about K113 billion) for the rehabilitation of the 346 Kilometer stretch along M1 road.
Minister of Finance Mwanamvekha signed the facility on behalf of Malawi government at Capital Hill, through a televised signing ceremony.
The facility has been described as largest ever loan for investment in Malawi.
Of the 139 million euros or K113 billion, 120 million euros (approximately, K 97.3 billion) is earmarked for rehabilitation works for the Kamuzu International Airport Turn Off to Mzimba Junction sections of the M1 road, 15.5 million euros (about K12.6 billion) is an additional financing the rehabilitate the Kacheche to Chiweta section of the M1 in Rumphi district while 4 million euros (about K3.2 billion) is for a Technical Assistance Agreement for project implementation support to the Road Authority and Roads Fund Administration.
The rehabilitation works are expected to start from Kamuzu International Airport (KIA) Junction via Kasungu, then from Kasungu to Jenda, then from Jenda to Mzimba Junction and finally from Kacheche in to Chiweta in Rumphi district.
Currently, the M1 road is in dilapidated state and is considered as a death trap to motorists.
The rehabilitation works aim to reduce transport costs, cut travel time and facilitate export.
The M1 upgrade is also expected to improve international links to Zambia and enhance access to Dar es Salaam as part of the north-south regional transport corridor, according to Minister of Finance, Economic Planning and Development who signed the facility on behalf of Malawi government at Capital Hill, through a televised signing ceremony.