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Road construction work by Iranian engineers almost complete in Afghanistan

Kabul, Jan 19, IRNA -- Construction work of laying the foundation for Afghanistan's Herat-Doughan Road by Iranian civil engineers is 80 percent completed, Iran's Ambassador to Kabul Mohammad-Ebrahim Taherian told IRNA here on Saturday night.

Taherian who has recently visited the 114 km highway's project in a telephone interview with us added, "the road in question connects Iran's Khorassan Province with Afghanistan's Herat Province and is therefore of great economic and business importance for us."

He said that the construction work of the road is 25 percent ahead of its planned schedule, and its 50 million US dollar cost is allocated from the contributions of the Islamic Republic of Iran to the reconstruction process of Afghanistan.

The road is also fully designed, supervised and built by Iranian engineers, technicians and constructor contractors, he said.

Currently some 200 heavy road construction machines, belonging to Iran's Ministry of Roads and Transportation and some private sector construction companies are used in building the Herat-Doughan highway, while 450 Afghan construction workers, and 150 Iranian technicians and engineers cooperate in proceeding the infrastructure project.

The Iranian managers of the project are determined to end it much sooner than the scheduled date, and since all the needed material, machines, man power and money is at hand they hope they can leave a record in building a fine quality road in a record low period.

Iran's envoy to Kabul also visited the project for transferring electrical power from Iran to Afghanistan's Herat Province.

He told IRNA that the Iranian engineers are quickly proceeding with erecting the power transfer towers and the first phase of that project, too, would be operational February 12, coinciding with Al Adha Eid, when the light bulbs in Herat will be lit after a long gap.

Seventy percent of the construction work of the two-phase power transfer lines to Herat Province is now completed, and on February 12, with the completion of its phase one, 20 kilo volts of Iran's electrical power would be transferred to Herat.

Construction work of the second phase of the project will take about a year form now, and upon its full completion 132 kilo volts more electrical power of the Islamic Republic of Iran will be transferred to Afghanistan's Herat Province.

The total cost of the two phases of this project is announced to be 16.5 million US dollars, which is another part of the Islamic Republic of Iran's contribution to the reconstruction process of Afghanistan.

At last year's conference held in Tokyo, Japan, by states participating in the reconstruction of Afghanistan, Iran pledged over half a billion dollars, within a five year period.

... Payvand News - 1/19/03 ... --

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