Zambia has unveiled a new ZMK27 trillion ($5.3bn) roads project proposed to link outlying areas of the country to its ten provinces.

Expected to be implemented over a period of five years, the Link Zambia-8000 project, will improve interlink trade and marks the beginning of various projects to be undertaken by the government, reported the Times of Zambia.

Besides boosting the country’s economic growth, the new road construction project is expected to create huge employment opportunities.

The first phase of the project will involve the construction of 2,290km of road at a cost of ZMK7.9 trillion ($1.5bn), while the second phase, worth ZMK11.25 trillion ($2.2bn), covers 3,049km. The final phase of 2,862km will cost ZMK9 trillion ($1.76bn).

Zambia President Michael Sata said that he would personally observe the manner Road Development Agency (RDA) engaged contractors for the project, adding his office had taken over the running of the agency from the Ministry of Transport, Communications, Works and Supply.

Sata has also commissioned the beginning of the Lusaka-Leopards Hill Road construction project, from Chiawa to the Chirundu District.

The project will connect Feira to Luangwa Bridge and provide a link to various regions, including Kasisi, Chipembi, Chalimbana and Palabana.

The road link emphasises the government’s determination to improve the state of its infrastructure, Sata noted.