The African Development Bank (AFDB) has agreed to give Tunisia a TD453m ($310m) loan that will fund the country’s road upgrade programme.

This is the biggest loan that the African Development Bank has ever given to Tunisia for a single scheme. The project is aimed at rehabilitating 862.8 kilometres of roads, reinforcing 691.3km of roads and modernising 52.6-km of roads. The roads are mainly located in the cities of Beja, Jendouba, Kef, Siliana and Zaghouan in the north-west, Kasserine, Kairouan and Sidi Bouzid in the mid-west and Gafsa, Kebili, Tozeur and Medenine in the south.

In July, Tunisia’s Directorate General of Bridges and Pavements invited firms to bid by 18 September for the contract to develop and rehabilitate the road network in Jendouba (MEED 18:7:10).

The government hopes that by developing roads and infrastructure it will support the agriculture, fishing and forestry sectors in the region.

The Washington-based World Bank is also planning to spend $60m on infrastructure projects in northwest Tunisia. The main part of the plan includes the rehabilitation and construction of rural roads and water collection facilities. The initiative is scheduled to be completed by the end of 2013 and will be managed by the region’s development office Odesypano.