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WB Loan Supports Inland Waterway Transport in Jiangxi

The World Bank approved a loan of US$100 million to China on Friday to develop more reliable freight transport and cleaner energy production in Jiangxi Province.

Jiangxi Province, a land-locked province in south-central China, plans to develop inland waterway transport to supplement road and rail transport in providing competitive services for bulk and low-value cargo. The priority is to facilitate navigation on the Gan River, particularly in the middle and lower reaches of the River. Jiangxi Shihutang Navigation and Hydropower Complex Project will assist Jiangxi Province in achieving this objective by improving inland waterway transport capacity and service levels for primary and secondary industries in the Nanchang-Ganzhou corridor of the Gan River. The project will also help generate hydropower, a clean and renewable power resource, to meet rapidly growing demand for energy in the region.

The World Bank loan will finance construction of Shihutang Complex comprised of sluice gates, a ship lock, a power station with an installed capacity of 120 MW, a dam and an access road. The project will also build flood protection works to enhance the province's flood protection capacity. Technical assistance will be provided to strengthen the institutional and technical capacities of Jiangxi Administration of Navigation Affairs in inland waterway transport management, waterway development and maintenance, construction management, hydropower plant operation, and management of cumulative impacts at watershed level.

"The World Bank has supported five inland waterway transport projects in six provinces in China over the past 10 years," said World Bank Task Team Leader and Senior Transport Specialist Zhang Wenlai. "The Bank's unique expertise and experience, both international and local, is expected to contribute to the development of inland waterway transport sector in Jiangxi Province."

(China Development Gateway September 26, 2008)

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