The African Development Bank Group (AfDB) has approved a grant of $71.8m and a $3.1m loan to the Government of Mozambique for the construction of an asphalted 70km road section in Northern Mozambique, to improve connectivity with Tanzania.

The road project is expected to contribute to the economic growth and the eradication of poverty, as well as foster cross border trade and reinforce regional integration.

The road segment between Mueda and Negomano represents a missing link on the transport corridor between Mozambique and Tanzania.

The financial assistance offered by the AfDB will be used for the first phase of the road construction.

AfDB chief transport engineer Aymen Osman Ali said: “The project is key for traders and road users, who transport goods between Tanzania and Mozambique.

“Following the completion, they will benefit from more direct and shorter journeys to the ports of Pemba in Mozambique and Mtwara in Tanzania, effectively enhancing regional trade.”

The first phase of road works includes 70km road section which starts at Negomano, located adjacent to the Ruvuma River, the natural frontier with Tanzania, and ends in the locality of Roma.

"The project is key for traders and road users, who transport goods between Tanzania and Mozambique."

The road improvement works will reduce the travel time between the two localities from three to one hour.

That first phase road works will be complemented by a second one, which is slated to begin in 2019, and connect Roma to Mueda and includes the construction of a one stop border post.

The project includes the development of a masterplan for transport infrastructure and connectivity for the Northern regions of Mozambique (Niassa, Cabo Delgado and Nampula provinces).