The Transchaco highway in 2010, after being given a new asphalt surface

The Transchaco highway in 2010, after being given a new asphalt surface

Portuguese company Mota-Engil has won a US$ 430 million contract to resurface the Transchaco highway in Paraguay.

Dubbed “the worst highway in South America” the 835 km road runs between the country’s capital Asunción and Bolivia.

Although the road was resurfaced with asphalt in 2007, much of it is now said to be breaking up and the Paraguayan Ministry of Public Works has stated that initiating the repair of the highway is the most important contract in its history.

Mota-Engil and its Paraguayan consortium partner Concret Mix, were the sole bidders for the project, when an anticipated bid from Spanish company Obrascon Huarter Lain (OHL) and local contractor Heisecke failed to materialise.

The project calls for the repair and widening of the highway, along 530 km of its length. Drivers forced to use the road are routinely warned not to travel at night and to take extra food and water, in case they find themselves stranded along the largely uninhabited route.

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