The Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) approved a $61.5 million loan for Nicaragua to improve the quality of transportation services and the country’s national and international integration.
The main objectives of the project are to improve road access to the South Atlantic Autonomous Region (RAAS) and to reduce travel times and transportation costs of freight and passengers along the Gateada -Naciones Unidas-Bluefields corridor.
Nicaragua has the lowest road density in Central America. The scarcity of roads, in conjunction with the poor condition of existing ones—the majority unpaved—leaves the region relatively isolated from the rest of the country, as well as from Central America and Panama. This is particularly significant in rural areas, where the lack of connections to international main routes and ports is impeding the potential growth of the main productive sectors and hindering their integration into national and regional logistics and supply chains. The lack of road connectivity also restricts access to basic social services such as health, education, and public safety, thus playing a major role in perpetuating rural poverty.
After the project has been executed, there will be a paved road that is passable year round, shortening transportation times and lowering operating costs. The project expects to reduce travel times for passengers on the corridor by around 40 percent and for freight transportation by 71 percent.
Direct beneficiaries of the project include the 52,908 inhabitants of the communities near the road. They will be able to sell their products in less time with more competitive transportation costs and will have access to basic services for health and education. Towns that will directly benefit include Naciones Unidas, Germán Pomares, Nuevo León, La Esperanza, El Paraisito, Nuevo Horizonte, San Francisco, Kukra River, and Bluefields.
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