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6 March, 2020 00:00 00 AM / LAST MODIFIED: 5 March, 2020 11:56:12 PM
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Outbreak of coronavirus

Steps taken to maintain progress of Padma bridge project

Saddam Hossain back from Munshiganj

The Chinese company that has undertaken the construction work of Padma Bridge Rail Link Project (PBRLP) is of the opinion that stringent measures have been taken to maintain the progress of the mega project and other big ones amid the global outbreak of coronavirus. "Since the outbreak, effective and efficient actions have been undertaken to achieve two targets – ensuring zero infection for all the project staff and maintaining the progress work," said Wang Kun, project director of the PBRLP, undertaken by the China Railway Group Limited (known as CREC).

The top official of the Chinese company was speaking Wednesday at a press conference on "Mega Projects Undertaken by Chinese Companies", organised by the Embassy of China at the CREC project office situated in Janjira of Keraniganj. "Owing to the effective actions taken by CREC, there has been no coronavirus case among the staff of the mega project," he added. Kun said, "The outbreak of the coronavirus is affecting the execution of the CREC mega projects to some extent as some business entities are not in full operation in China and some project staff in the virus epicentre are not allowed to leave. To make up for the insufficiency of Chinese workers, more skilled local workers have been recruited," he added.

Chinese contractors of major projects think of minimising the impact of the coronavirus on the progress of major projects, the Government of Bangladesh is also needed to take proper action, such as opening a green channel for the visa of Chinese personnel related to major projects and expediting the Customs procedures for importing project materials and equipment. For PBRLP, 89.5 per cent of embankment design has been completed; 92.85 per cent of design of test piles has been completed.

For the Padma Bridge, 39 of the total of 42 piers have been completed and 25 of the total of 41 spans of steel truss have been erected so far. In general, 85.65 per cent of physical progress has been achieved. Li Jimming, Chinese ambassador in Dhaka, said, “Of course, there is an impact of coronavirus on ongoing projects as a number of engineers could not return to Bangladesh from China.”

 "China is winning in the battle against the epidemic. Already, the rate of newly affected has been reduced. China is no more a sole threat of spreading the disease." “The Government of Bangladesh should take proper action, such as opening a green channel for the visa of Chinese personnel related to major projects," he added.

Golam Fakhruddin A Chowdhury, project director, PBRLP, Bangladesh Railway, said: "The progress of mega projects has been hampered a little due to COVID-19. We seek approval of the authorities concerned to allow some Chinese staffs to come to Bangladesh for the sake of the projects. Still we are optimistic that the project will be completed in due time."

Md Kamruzzaman, deputy project director (Technical) of the Padma Bridge project, said, “Our work is now ongoing at 70 per cent of the original speed and we try to resume work in full swing within this month.”

“Chinese are training local people and we have already brought robots for the works. Our target is to open the bridge for public in June 202. If catastrophe comes, the deadline may be deferred by a month or two but not for a long,” he added.

After the conference, media personnel and officials visited the rail link project along Keraniganj and the Padma Bridge site in Mawa.

 

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Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman

Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

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