Islands News

Japan Bridging Bougainville

By Sasha Pei-Silovo – EM TV Online

An assessment team from the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) travelled into Bougainville this week to facilitate the evaluation of bridges constructed under the Japanese funded Project for Construction of Bridges on Bougainville Coastal Trunk Road.

It has also been revealed that the government of Japan is now looking at extending the project to cover South Bougainville.

A total of 15 bridges, were built by Kitano, a company contracted by JICA to carry out the works.

The Bougainville Coastal Trunk Road runs from the east coast of the island of Bougainville, from north to south, linking Buka to Arawa.

The road link is the lifeline of the people and much of its infrastructure, such as bridges and causeways, had been in dire need of maintenance and repair. Most had either collapsed or been washed away by flood waters. But this is now a thing of the past, thanks to the aid provided by Japan.

The project has been a sure-found answer to ending the daily struggles and despair of the people of the once, war-torn island of Bougainville. The people can now transport their cash crops such as cocoa, copra and vegetables for sale and travel to and from Buka and Arawa, in ease and comfort. A definate boost for the economy of the region, and for the effective delivery of goods and services.

The 15 bridges are Bakanovi, Bove, Pukarobil 1, Pukarobil 2, Creepers, Ratavi, Iraka, Korova, Malas, Ururua, Kaskrus, Rotaovei, Warakapis, Irung and Rawa 1.

Categorised as level 2 of the environmental consideration, the project’s environment mitigation measure was monitored and implemented based on the Environmental Management and Monitoring Plan, during the construction of all bridges.

The Project for Construction of Bridges on Bougainville Coastal Trunk Road is a grant aided project by the government of Japan – implemented by the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) and counterpart agencies, Department and Planning and Monitoring, Department of Works and the Autonomous Bougainville Government. 

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