Costa Rica: Environmental Approval for Road to Caribbean

President Solis has personally announced that the environmental impact study for the expansion to four lanes of Route 32 to Limon has now been approved by the environmental authority.

Monday, December 5, 2016

Almost two months after the National Environmental Technical Secretariat (SETENA) rejected the study as "flawed and incomplete", the institution has now granted the approval, according to President Luis Guillermo Solís through his own social networks. reports that "... 'On August 29 representatives from the Chinese Embassy in Costa Rica and the China Harbor Engineering Company (CHEC) confirmed their readiness to start "immediately" on the expansion works on Route 32, as soon as the National Technical Environmental Secretariat (Setena) grants environmental viability."

"... 'We are always trying to accelerate the works. The main reason is to control as much as possible the pace at which the project progresses, so that once we have obtained permission (environmental sustainability) we can start immediately," said Teresa Wu, representative in Costa Rica of the company Chec, during the Third International Conference for investors in Expo Caribbean Limon, in Westphalia, Limon."

The contract with the Chinese company CHEC was endorsed in April by the Office of the General Comptroller, three years after the Chinchilla administration began negotiations with the Chinese government to obtain financing. 

More on this topic

Costa Rica: Environmental Study for Road to Limon Rejected

October 2016

The Environmental Impact Study for the extension of Route 32, which will cost $495 million, has shortcomings in form and substance, and does not include geotechnical or and social impact studies.

A work which is urgently needed for the Costa Rican economy is still on hold.

Costa Rica: $465 million Road Project Accelerated

June 2016

The Chinese construction company CHEC will finance the cost of the environmental impact study in order to unfreeze the project to expand 100 kilometers from San José to Limón.

The goal of the construction company China Harbour Engineering Company (CHEC) is to avoid further delays to the start of the project to expand and renovate 107 kilometers of road in the province of Limón on Route 32. Lack of resources at the Ministry of Public Works and Transport prevented any progress being made in this process, which in turn is a prerequisite for the Chinese bank Eximbank to hand over the $395 million with which the work will be financed.

Costa Rica: Chinese Dragon Spits Fire

April 2015

Although the Minister of Public Works had demonstrated his confidence that there would not be increased costs in the road project to be built by the Chinese company CHEC, an announcement has now been made that there will be increases and they will be "substantial".

An article in reports that "...Confidence in "Chinese honor" and a personal guarantee that the Asians would not raise the cost of extending Route 32 (to Limon), only lasted two months for Transport Minister Carlos Segnini. "

Costa Rica: Deadline to Sign $395 million Chinese Loan Extended

June 2014

China Harbour Engineering Company has accepted a request by the Solis administration to extend the signing a loan to be used for the extension of the road going from San José to the Caribbean.

It is the fifth time there has been a postponement of the signing of the loan agreement for the extension of 105 kilometers of Route 32, which connects the capital with the Port of Limón, in the Caribbean, but the first in the administration of President Luis Guillermo Solis.

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