C&C wins major order in Afghanistan
PM News Bureau
C&C Constructions Ltd, in joint venture with B. Seenaiah &
Company (Projects) Ltd, has received an order worth Rs 344 crore ($86 million)
from an American consortium for a road project in Afghanistan.
The order, placed by Louis Berger Group Inc. and Black & Veatch Special Purpose
Corporation joint venture (LBG/B&V JV) is for rehabilitation and construction of
the 103-km Gardez Khost Road in east Afghanistan. The work is scheduled for
completion by December 2009. The project is part of the Afghanistan
Infrastructure & Rehabilitation Programme.
Commenting on the order, Gurjeet Singh Johar, Chairman, C&C Constructions Ltd,
told Projectmonitor that work on the project would start after the detailed
meprogram is approved. In joint venture with BSCPL, C&C has won several orders
in Afghanistan, most of which have been completed. "The order, the largest by
the joint venture overseas, will give a new dimension to our presence in
Afghanistan," Johar noted.
Gardez-Khost Road is the only direct connection between the two commercial city
centres in eastern Afghanistan. Gardez and Khost are respective capitals of the
provinces of Paktia and Khost. This dirt road is also a critical route for local
and foreign military forces to maintain support to stabilize this part of the
war-torn country. Every winter season, snow and icy weather create very
difficult motoring conditions. The situation is sometimes so extreme that there
have been reports of vehicles losing control and falling into the steep
embankments along the edge of the road. There have also been instances of
motorists freezing to death in stranded vehicles due to traffic jams that could
take days to clear.
With the assistance of United States Agency for International Development (USAID),
a project to rehabilitate the road was taken up in 2007. LBG/B&V JV was
appointed contractor and the tendering process to appoint the contractor was
initiated in November last year. Till then, local Afghan contractor, Zurmat
Construction Company was appointed as contractor to keep the road clear of snow,
as an interim step till the reconstruction activities started. Based in the
province of Gardez, Zurmat has been able to periodically maintain the road with
effect from November 30, 2007. Where mechanical equipment is ineffective, Zurmat
has been employing local labourers to manually clear the road with shovels. This
has resulted in employment for locals besides making the road much more passable
and less risky for motorists.
[May 12-18, 2008]