The Albanian Government has commenced work on the $400m Tirana-Elbasan highway project, which includes building a four-lane highway between Tirana and Elbasan.

The new road will be 31km long and will include two tunnels with a total length of 4.4km. Greek company Aktor will carry out tunnel work worth €59m ($83m).

The Tirana-Elbasan highway is expected to reduce travel time between the two cities to nearly 20 minutes from one hour.

Aktor will complete the tunnel within 18 months and the entire highway will be completed in two years’ time.

The government secured a $220m loan from the Islamic Bank for Development for the project and is negotiating a $100m loan from Abu Dhabi and $15m-25m each from Saudi Arabia and Opec.