The Government has secured a forty million US dollars loan from the OPEC Fund for International Development (OFID). The monies have been earmarked for the upgrading of the Caracol Road. Phase One of the project will include the upgrading of 26.4 miles of graveled road to an all-weather, paved standard. Five double-lane reinforced concrete bridges will be constructed within this phase. Prime Minister Dean Barrow signed on behalf of the Government and Director-General Dr. Suleiman Al-Herbish signed on behalf of OFID.
Prime Minister Dean Barrow: “The current loan agreement that we are about to sign is of course going to be, even though there is a whole lot of competition, going to be really the headline grabber with respect to our continuing program opening up the road to Caracol rehabilitating that road, upgrading it making it an all weather road is going to be a monumental achievement, a tremendous leap forward for this country in terms of what it’s going to mean with respect to tourism and also to agriculture.”
Dr.Suleiman Jasir Al-Herbish, Director General, OFIC: “The loan agreement we are going to sign builds up the well established framework of cooperating between OFID and Belize which has reached $131.4 million dollars, to recognizing the importance and critical situation of transport infrastructure in Belize OFID has directed nearly two thirds of the volume of its assistance towards enhancing the transport sector of the country. Our plan is built around something we call the nexus which is energy, water and food. But of course we talk about water and agriculture and you cannot really make it meaningful if you don’t have the transport and this is why we are very happy to see that most of our work here is to really connect. Yesterday when I was flying over the region I saw and came to physical touch with the real meaning of this objective.”
The road to access Caracol through Georgeville and Santa Elena will also be upgraded.