Construction works on the Kigali –Gatuna highway are set to be completed by February next year, according to an official at the Rwanda Transport Development Agency (RTDA).
Olivier Kabera, the acting coordinator of single project implementation unit, said the construction works are on schedule.
“The work is now 75 per cent complete and, to date, 57 kilometres out of 78 have been tarmacked,” he said.
The highway connects Kigali to Kampala and also serves a link for Burundi and the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo to the port of Mombasa.
The rehabilitation is also underway on the Uganda side, the Katuna-Mbarara stretch which covers 124km.
One of the major transportation problems is poor road infrastructure which still exists on both the central and northern corridors, making unnecessary delays that hinder trade across the East African region.
Jean Bosco Hakizimana, a truck driver who normally uses the road, said the highway needs to be completed as a matter of urgency, adding that they are always trapped in congestion.
“The road is being expanded which is good for us. However, I appeal to the contractors to speed up the construction works,” he said.
The joint reconstruction project was commissioned by President Paul Kagame and his Ugandan counterpart Yoweri Museveni in December 2011. The road has a lifespan of 20 years.
Kabera said the project will facilitate international and domestic trade and promote regional integration.
The project that is undertaken by Strabag International, a German firm, will cost of Rwf46.9 billion. European Union financed 92 per cent of the project with the Rwandan government contributing the rest.
Part of the rehabilitation plan is to improve the parking area as part of a wider initiative to create a single border post at Gatuna and the building of a roundabout at Nyabugogo to facilitate traffic flow.