Construction work on what is said to be the busiest road in southern Africa is set to commence, with Zimbabwe’s President Mugabe expected to commission the project next week.
The dualisation of an 897-kilometre stretch of the Beitbridge-Harare-Chirundu highway will be undertaken by a combination of Austrian company Geiger International and Chinese firm China Harbour Engineering Company.
At an estimated cost of around US$ 2.7 billion, the project is expected to be completed in three years.
Representatives of the two companies involved in the project are reported to be finalising the deal this week, with negotiations revolving around the percentage of the project to be offered to local companies.
Zimbabwe’s Minister of Transport and Infrastructural Development, Joram Gumbo, said, "We are prioritising this road...because it's the busiest road in Southern Africa and Beitbridge Border post is the busiest port of entry/exit in Sub-Saharan Africa.
"We will segment it into five segments between Beitbridge and Harare and three between Harare and Chirundu so that we can quickly finish the dualisation. We are going to make a ring road surrounding Harare. We are also looking forward to dualising the Beitbridge-Victoria Falls and Harare-Nyamapanda roads. We are expecting the work to be completed in three years' time."