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Once complete, the Catembe Bridge, crossing the Bay of Maputo, will be the largest suspension bridge in Africa File photo: CRBC Mozambique
In a little less than a year, the much talked about Maputo-to-Ponta do Ouro road, encompassing Africa’s largest suspension bridge, should be open for business.
Once complete, the road will see travelling time between Maputo in Mozambique to Kosi Bay, South Africa’s east coast border post, drastically reduced, from six hours on demanding sandy roads to just 90 minutes.
Speaking at the Trade and Investment KZN Export Summit in Durban earlier this month, Paul Runge, Director of Projects and Development Finance at Africa House, said completion of the road next August was expected to lead to a stream of international tourists visiting the province.
He also said KZN exporters should be seeking opportunities to develop ancillary roads in Mozambique as the province stands to benefit from a tourism boom.
Not without its hiccups, work on the R10-billion road was briefly delayed in February as stall holders in Maputo refused to make way for the road without receiving compensation.
Their actions threatened to delay completion of the northern access road to the suspension bridge.
Stall holders demanded compensation before moving out of the area, as people whose homes had to be relocated were compensated.
At a meeting with the stall holders, Maputo Mayor, David Simango disputed his alleged promise of compensation to the stall holders, saying the municipality has no money for such and had not received a payout for this from Maputo-Sul, the company constructing the road.
The new 120km road will run from Maputo over the largest suspension bridge in Africa, which will span 680m and stand 60m above sea level across the Bay of Maputo, linking the capital to Catembe and to adjoining roads to the southern border town of Ponta de Ouro.
Source: Zululand Observer