The World Bank has approved an additional $241.6m loan to Azerbaijan for a second highway project, which is estimated to cost $356.15m.

Around $171.6m is expected to be given as an International Bank for Reconstruction & Development (IBRD) loan and $70m as International Development Association credit.

The project involves expanding a 100km section of the existing two-lane Baku-Shamakhi road into a four-lane motorway.

It also includes improving management of the nascent motorway network and other road safety activities.

The move is expected to improve safety and efficiency, and provide better transport services in mountainous central and northern regions of Azerbaijan.

The project is also expected to aid the government in developing a motorway network.

The World Bank’s third phase of assistance to Azerbaijan’s road sector includes focusing on the country’s motorway network, transport corridors and secondary local roads.