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The government has announced the concession, starting next year, of National Road Number One (EN1) between the town of Marracuene in Maputo province and the city of Xai-Xai in Gaza.
Speaking during an inspection visit to the EN1, Minister of Public Works and Housing and Water Resources Carlos Mesquita explained that the concession of this infrastructure, vital for the country’s economy, was intended to ensure the quality of the road and improve the circulation of people and goods.
In light of this, the definition of appropriate strategies for the concession was currently underway, he added.
“We launched a tender at the end of last year, but the proposals made to us left a lot to be desired and we had to cancel the process. We are now redefining a more adequate strategy, from the point of view of dimensioning and integration of a few more components, before moving forward. The ideal would be to restart the whole concession process next year, or even later this year,” Minister Mesquita said.
The minister was speaking during a visit to scheduled maintenance works on a 17-kilometre stretch of the EN1 between 3 de Fevereiro and Incoluane, Maputo province.
“The impression we have is that the maintenance works are in line with what the project is about. Here we have an asphalt mass which, when the intervention is finished, will be about five centimetres thick. It must be recognised that the 3 de Fevereiro-Incoluane section is an area that is quite degraded and saw its last major intervention 15 years ago. It is important that roads follow an adequate plan of routine and periodic maintenance until the end of their useful life. Unfortunately, for financial reasons, it was not possible to comply with this schedule plan and that is why we find roads in this situation,” the minister explained.
Carlos Mesquita said that, in addition to the Marracuene-Xai-Xai section, the Matola-Boane, Boane-Bela-Vista and Boane-Namaacha sections would also be handed over to private management. He also mentioned that, for these roads, no more tolls are planned.