The government of Yemen is to begin the construction of a $3.5bn international highway partially funded by the World Bank Group.Â
The 710km highway will be the largest ever infrastructure project in Yemen. It will connect the southern port city of Aden to the Saudi Arabian border near Saada in the north.
This is more than just a road project; it will make a significant contribution to Yemen’s future stability and growth– Jim Yong Kim, president, World Bank
The World Bank has contributed $134m to the first stage of a planned three-stage project. The first phase will be 140km long and will link Aden with Taiz. This element was part-funded by the Saudi Development Fund.Â
Officials from the World Bank said the road will help rebuild Yemen’s "social and economic base". The highway is expected to boost the economy of the poorest country in the Arabian peninsula. Jim Yong Kim, president of the World Bank, commented: "This is more than just a road project; it will make a significant contribution to Yemen’s future stability and growth"Â Â
The highway will run roughly parallel to an existing road, which the World Bank classifies as "dangerous". Around 18,000 vehicles use it every day.