QCOSTARICA – Representatives of the Chinese construction company, CHEC, awarded the contract to expand the Ruta 32 (San José – Limon) road, says the work comes out at a higher cost than initially agreed with the government.
“We want this road to be good for all and are willing to cooperate, we could do it without a profit, but cannot at a loss,” said Teresa Wu, company representative.
Wu explained that to meet all the technical requirements requested by the current government of Costa Rica, the cost would be higher than the initial US$395 million dollars agreed to with the previous administration.
The company estimates the additional costs at US$90 million dollars, not taking into account expropriations and relocations of public services.
The higher cost is based on draft comments by the Ministerio de Obras Publicas y Transportes (MOPT), improving bridges and pedestrian overpasses.
“They are asking for more and new standards that are outside the scope of the project. The result means an increase in cost because it will require more material and use of more machinery. It’s like you’re asked to build a three-story house and then expect four,” Wu said.
The expansion of the road, some 107 kilometres between Limon and the Rio Frio crossing is expected to start next year, but will depend on the government being satisfied with the designs submitted and expropriations concluded.
The work will be financed by a loan from the Chinese government, which was approved by the Legislative Assembly, with the understanding that the cost would not increase despite the improvements requested.