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What went into the monumental $392.6m project.

“Each project I have worked on at the Asian Development Bank (ADB) – from new roads in Mongolia to major transport and infrastructure projects in China – has brought a unique range of benefits to the communities and the environment surrounding them.

“The Guizhou Shuibai railway is designed to provide a more reliable and efficient means of transporting passengers and coal to energy-deficient areas in Guizhou and its neighbouring provinces. It is also helping to establish related industries and so create employment and other income-generating opportunities that reduce poverty in the area.

“Difficult terrain meant that the construction was challenging. The total length of the railway was 119km, but included more than 50 tunnels and 100 bridges – and, to build 100km of railway line, the contractors first had to build more than 200km of access roads.

“The project has been a great success: immediately after completion, the revenue of local governments in the area increased by 94 per cent and average income per worker increased by 95 per cent. The proportion of the population below the poverty line in the area has decreased by 55 per cent.

“As an operations specialist focusing on projects in China and Mongolia at ADB, I was involved in the last stage of implementation of the railway and wrote the project completion report.”

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