Provision of a € 259 million sovereign loan, in two tranches, to the Republic of Belarus to co-finance the reconstruction and modernisation of 12 regional bridges and M3 Minsk-Vitebsk road section on North-South Corridor (Project).
The identified 12 bridges are in dilapidated conditions, which require an immediate rehabilitation to avoid bridges closure. The completion of the M3 (Minsk-Vitebsk section) rehabilitation is a priority for the Government and is part of a comprehensive road rehabilitation programme on main corridors, which continues to focus on Belarus's transit potential.
The Project will support Belarus' economic development and bring operational efficiency from improved regional infrastructure through reconstruction of bridges and will facilitate transportation efficiency on the North-South corridor.
ETI score: 67
The Project will support economic development and regional integration in Belarus by enhancing connectivity along the key transport and trade corridors linking neighbouring countries (connecting Russian Federation, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, and Ukraine). The Project will target institutional and governance improvements in the Belarus road sector, with a focus on road safety. The Project will also involve a strategic road network risk assessment to identify high risk areas with a supporting mitigation investment programme to be developed, undertaken and managed with the involvement of newly trained road safety engineers.
The loan will be for the benefit of the Ministry of Transport and Communications, which has overall responsibility for the road sector and will be responsible for the implementation of the Project.
EBRD Finance Summary
Total Project Cost
Environmental and Social Summary
Tranche 1 is categorised B (2014 ESP). The independent environmental and social due diligence ("ESDD") of the Company and the project has confirmed that the Tranche 1 (largely associated with the bridge works) will result in environmental and social benefits and safety improvements and that any adverse future environmental and social impacts will be temporary in nature and primarily limited to the construction activities. The ESDD has further confirmed that the Borrower's overall capacity, and related EHSS management systems, is generally aligned with the Bank's Performance Requirements (PRs). Further, the Borrower is an existing client of the Bank and has demonstrated satisfactory performance on the previous projects.
Local EIAs (OVOS) have been undertaken in accordance with national requirements to evaluate the risks and impacts associated with each of the 12 bridges. Findings from the ESDD has identified that the OVOS reports are found to be of good quality and in line with Belarus national requirements (to be confirmed by the State Environmental Review). Disclosure of the project related information and public engagement was organised and completed in accordance to the national requirements for each bridge. The ESDD confirms that reconstruction and replacement of the old bridges will significantly improve operational safety and will improve storm water collection and treatment.
Whilst the project is generally found to be structured in compliance with EBRD PRs, the ESDD has identified a number of gaps to be further addressed. Stakeholder engagement activities will need to be improved according to the developed Stakeholder Engagement Plan (SEP) including enhanced communication with the local communities and road users during the construction stage. Occupation, health and safety (OHS) risks are related only to the construction phase and will be further elaborated and included into Construction Environmental and Social Management Plan by the contractors. Whilst land acquisition is not expected to directly affect any households or businesses, some additional information is still required for a few areas and follow-up assessment might be required. No significant negative biodiversity impact is expected, but additional assessments and monitoring will be carried out for two bridges prior to construction. Although no issues related to cultural heritage have been identified in the OVOS reports, additional archaeological surveys are required at the next project design stage. A road safety audit will also be completed.
An Environmental and Social Action Plan (ESAP) has been developed to address the issues raised above, and also to further improve environmental and social management at all stages of the project implementation, including the following actions: improvements of contractors and supply chain management; preparation and implementation of a Construction Environmental and Social Management Plan; development of a structured and integrated Environmental Health and Safety Management System; improvements in water monitoring, formalising and developing better labour and OHS practices; safety and emergency response procedures during construction. This will comprise also the development of a formal human resources policy including standards for working conditions and employment policies (non-discrimination, promotion of equal opportunities); the introduction of employment contracts; improvement of safety at workplaces during construction; training programmes; a workers grievance mechanism; obtaining and maintaining all applicable permits.
Tranche 2 is categorised A and will require a full Environmental Social Impact Assessment as per the Bank's PRs. The ESIA Disclosure Package will need to be disclosed for a minimum of 120 days.
Technical Cooperation and Grant Financing
The following EBRD-funded Technical Co-operation assignments are envisaged as part of this Project:
Pre-signing: Environment and social due diligence support.
Post-signing: Reform implementation assistance.
Company Contact Information
Mr Sergey A. Leonchik
+375 17 359 81 53
Head of road development department (GUAD), Ministry of Transport and Communications of the Republic of Belarus, 220029, Minsk, Chicherina, 21
PSD last updated
14 Feb 2020
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More information on the EBRD’s practices in this regard is set out in the ESP.
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Project Complaint Mechanism (PCM)
If efforts to address environmental, social or public disclosure concerns with the Client or the Bank are unsuccessful (e.g., through the Client’s Project-level grievance mechanism or through direct engagement with Bank management), individuals and organisations may seek to address their concerns through the EBRD’s accountability mechanism.
The accountability mechanism independently reviews Project issues that are believed to have caused (or to be likely to cause) harm. The purpose of the mechanism is: to support dialogue between Project stakeholders to resolve environmental, social and public disclosure issues; to determine whether the Bank has complied with its Environmental and Social Policy or Project-specific provisions of its Access to Information Policy; and where applicable, to address any existing non-compliance with these policies, while preventing future non-compliance by the Bank.
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