Construction work involving phase one of the Sarawak portion of the Pan Borneo Highway has commenced, Bernama reports. The news agency has reported that work on the 43 km-long Nyalau-Bakun Junction Road in Bintulu is already underway – the Sarawak portion has been marked with a ceiling budget of RM15 billion.

The 43 km-long stretch is expected to be completed in around 30 months’ time. Following that, construction and development work for the second phase should commence soon after – said stretch will be the 33 km-long Teluk Melano-Sematan route in Lundu.

Safri Zainuddin, permanent secretary of the state infrastructure development and communications ministry, confirmed that the tender for the construction of the Teluk Melano-Sematan stretch has been awarded. “The first bulldozer is expected there by next month,” he added.

To recap, a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) pertaining to the construction of the Sarawak segment of the Pan Borneo Highway was signed in July 2015. The signing saw the introduction of Lebuhraya Borneo Utara as the appointed Project Delivery Partner for the Sarawak portion of the highway. The firm will be responsible for supervising and managing construction works regarding the 1,090 km-long stretch of highway.