KUCHING: Plans to construct and upgrade the 2,239km Pan Borneo Highway will be carried out in stages until 2025, says Works Minister Datuk Fadillah Yusof.
He said the allocation of RM500mil for the highway announced in Budget 2014 recently showed that the Government was committed towards improving the quality of road networks in Sabah and Sarawak.
“The allocation will be used to implement projects according to a list of priorities which is being negotiated between Federal agencies and the state governments.
“For a start, the RM500mil cashflow allocation approved in Budget 2014 is sufficient to carry out critical projects on the highway, particularly in accident-prone areas,” he told Parliament on Tuesday when addressing points related to his ministry raised during the Budget debate.
On the upgrading of the 25km Sarikei-Tanjung Manis road, Fadillah said this project had been identified for implementation under the 10th Malaysia Plan.
“This is one of the projects proposed under the Highway Network Development Plan Phase Two for Sabah and Sarawak.
“Due to the high cost of the project, the Works Ministry will implement it in phases, and priority will be given towards upgrading a 15km corridor from Sarikei to Tanjung Manis first.”
He added that the project had been approved with a cost of RM45mil, of which RM3mil had been approved this year for the purpose of initial works and project design.
“At present we are waiting for the scope of the project to be approved by the state government.”