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World Bank loan for Bolivian airport

The World Bank reported on the progress of a loan for improvements to Bolivia‘s National Airport and the San Buenaventura-Ixiamas road transit.

First and foremost, the World Bank approved a $109.5 million International Development Association (IDA) credit in fiscal 2011, which became effective in fiscal 2012, for Bolivia’s National Road and Airport Infrastructure Project.

While the project has been extended three times, the latest extension was approved in October 2018, with a new closing date of August 7, 2022, and the current amount of credit granted for the project is $91.7 million.

What is its objective? To improve the year-round transit capacity of the San Buenaventura-Ixiamas, and the safety, security and operational reliability of the Rurrenabaque Airport.

The project has three components: improvement of the San Buenaventura-Ixiamas national highway, improvement of the Rurrenabaque airport, and institutional strengthening of the Bolivian Highway Administration (ABC), the airport authority, the Airports and Auxiliary Services for Air Navigation Administration (AASANA), and other relevant entities.

The second component has been executed by the airport agency, AASANA, which was responsible for most of Bolivia’s airports.

World Bank

The scope of the component is the improvement and modernization of a small regional airport in Rurrenabaque, with the construction of a terminal building, control tower, technical building, access road, taxiway and apron.

All civil works and supervision began in May 2018.

According to AASANA, the physical progress of the works contract stood at 85 percent as of October 2021, and the contract completion date is scheduled for January 20, 2022.

In 2019, the Government of Bolivia (GoB) requested a reallocation of funds from the first to the second component to finance (i) additional civil works not previously contemplated in the preparation of the parent project, including paved fire truck access, secure airport perimeter fencing works, the construction of the apron, taxiway and drainage system, (ii) safety, meteorological, medical and security equipment necessary for the modern, safe and efficient operation of the completed airport, and (iii) support to the Project Implementation Unit (PIU) within AASANA.

The corresponding amendment to the financing agreement was approved in December 2019.

On December 1, 2021, the GoB dissolved AASANA and a new agency, Navegacion Aerea y Aeropuertos Bolivianos (NAABOL), was created to replace it. NAABOL assumed the contracts, licenses, agreements, credits and any other administrative tasks signed by AASANA.

Overall, the first phase of the project was completed, and the World Bank team participated in the inauguration on March 21. The second phase should resume shortly, once the restructuring is completed.

 

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