UNRA and Works ministry officials during the launch of the procurement process on Monday.

Uganda National Roads Authority (UNRA) on Monday launched the Request for Proposal (RFP) and online procurement process for the Kampala-Jinja Expressway (KJE) Public-Private Partnership Project.

The new expressway when done will address the existing Kampala-Jinja road inadequacy, which is a major bottleneck to transportation of good. It will be a continuation of plans to have multi-lane expressways and superhighways connecting major cities, exit ports and economic zones.

The KJE will address the current congestion, reduce vehicle operating costs and accident rates that are one of the highest in the country. It will improve mobility and provide efficient passenger and freight operations for both regional and national traffic.

The launch of the procurement process of Kampala Jinja Expressway will set the stage for the country to accumulate a critical mass of transport infrastructure network to spur economic growth.

The vision, specific to the Kampala-Jinja Expressway, is to ‘provide a great user experience in terms of riding surface, predictability of travel times and safety’

An artistic impression of a section of the Kampala-Jinja Expressway.

The total cost of the project is about US $1.4 billion (Shs5.2 trillion).  Funding so far secured including the AfDB’s loan US$229.5 million (Shs860 billion), is about US$335 million that is about 24% of the required funds.

UNRA officials say the plan is for the government to raise close to US$ 600 million from private funders making the road the first to be built in Uganda using a Public-Private Partnership mode. During the construction phase, however, any outstanding balance for the project cost will also be met by the government.

Under the PPP arrangement, a private contractor will build, finance and operate the project for 30 years under a DBFOT model to earn back their investment through a road tolling scheme. After 30 year, UNRA will take back the road.

“The Public-Private Partnership model will bring in private sector participation and financing of a key infrastructure in Uganda and will yield a significant economic return for the country with estimated net revenue of $2.1 billion over the 30-year concession period,” said Augustine Kpehe Ngafuan, the AfDB Country Manager for Uganda, who signed on behalf of the Bank.

The new Kampala-Jinja expressway comprises three section;  Section 1: The Kampala Southern Bypass (31km); Section 2: Kampala to Namagunga (35km); Section 3: Namagunga – Jinja (42km)

According to UNRA, the RFP procurement will be run from a High end, secure, custom built and world class proven online tender platform (Virtual Data Room)

The online platform shall enable issuance of RFP and all relevant reference documents by UNRA; manage Question and Answer sessions and all clarifications from Bidders; handle the submission, evaluation and management of bids by all bidders

The online procurement platform will transparent and therefore safeguard the integrity of the process and eliminate corruption, reduce risk exposure related to the complex, high-value KJE tender plus reduce internal process costs.