COLOMBIA: Adjustments to the navigability project of the Magdalena River explained

In a forum of Findeter (Colombian Bank of Territorial Development), Minister of Transportation explained the reasons for several changes in the APP (Public-Privat association). 


The navigability project of the Magdalena River will focus on the section where there is greater river navigation, guaranteeing Barranquilla access to Barrancabermeja, explained the Minister of Transportation, Ángela María Orozco, in her speech at the Forum Sustainable Development Route, Findeter, in Santa Marta.

The project has been divided, and there are two parts, one that goes from Barranquilla to La Gloria, and the other from La Gloria to Barrancabermeja.

After the competitive dialogue process, changes that were not included in the previous project are included, such as structural works that the access channel would require: the reconstruction of one of the “tajamares” (River protection wall), the maintenance of another and the reconstruction of one of the barriers of the kilometer 14.

These modifications will involve 100,000 million pesos of additional capital.
During her intervention at the event in which more than 150 mayors and elected governors met, the minister said that the determinations on the navigability of Magdalena were taken after a dialogue with the different sectors, which culminated at the end of last month.

Given that the history of navigation has more than one hundred years between Barrancabermeja and Barranquilla, according to the Ministry, one of the biggest shortcomings of the project was that 70 percent of the resources of the APP were destined from Barranca to Puerto Salgar and only the balance in the access channel.

“From Barranca to Puerto Salgar there is not even a river port, partly because the slope is higher, and partly because of the curvatures of the river,” said the official.

She also stated that the project did not include the structural works of the access channel. “In theory, we were going to have the navigability of Barranquilla and Puerto Triunfo guaranteed, but we were not guaranteed that the boats could enter Barranquilla. That was the APP (Public-Privat association) that I found, ”she noted.

On the other hand, the Minister of Transportation highlighted the importance of having monitoring units that allow designing a dredging strategy according to the behavior of the river.

“Cormagdalena, the last five years, every four months by emergency, hired dredges, and when you hire dredges every five months, because what happens is that you do not plan and there is no effective use of resources.”

So it was well emphasized that all fourth generation projects and the navigability of the Magdalena River, between one and three billion pesos are structured as private public alliances.

Source El Tiempo
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