DHAKA, Bangladesh

The Bangladeshi prime minister on Sunday inaugurated the construction of the largest dedicated rail bridge in the country.

Sheikh Hasina laid the foundation stone of the 4.8km-long double-line dual-gauge Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Railway Bridge virtually from her official residence in Dhaka.

The bridge would improve regional rail connectivity as it would allow Bangladesh Railway to operate more trains between the capital and the country’s northwestern regions.

Of the total 167.81 billion Bangladeshi taka [$1.98 billion] mega project, the Japan International Cooperation Agency will provide $1.4 billion while the rest will be financed by the government. The project is scheduled to be completed by 2025.

The South Asian country’s northwestern part is mainly an agricultural zone, and most of the country’s sugar and jute mills are located here.

The premier said the project will bring economic benefits, and provide transportation to people and goods at a cheaper rate.

Railway Minister Md Nurul Islam Sujan and Ambassador of Japan Ito Naoki also spoke on the occasion.

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