North/South Highway Project Breaks Ground In St. Catherine, Jamaica
April 20, 2013
Following the well attended launch of the US $730million North- South Highway Project in December 2012, China Harbour Engineering Company (CHEC) broke ground for the start of construction of the 66 kilometer toll road, on April 18, 2013 in Treadways, St. Catherine, Jamaica. In contrast to the fanfare in December 2012 when the Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller and many other government Ministers gave their support along with many other VIPs and media personnel , this ceremony was more an in-house affair in line with the Chinese traditional way of blessing their own endeavor.
The Chinese Ambassador to Jamaica, His Excellency Zheng Qingdian was a guest of honour along with a number of executives of CHEC’s parent company, China Communications Construction Company, who are the main investors of the project, based in Beijing, China, and those from the CHEC Headquarters office as well. Present were the Managers, Deputy Managers and a few other staff members of CHEC, Jamaica numbering approximately 100.
The programme included speeches from top executives, with main presentations by Ambassador Zheng Qingdian; Zhongdong Tang, Regional Manager for CHEC; and Qiwu Yang, Project Manager of the N/S Highway. These were followed by a ritual where candles were lit on a table with fruit while in the distance a tractor ceremoniously broke the ground.
At the end everyone socialized and posed for photographs at the venue, and then some went on a tour of the site office and dormitory base where most of the Chinese employees will reside for the duration of the three year project.
It will be executed in three parts simultaneously, the Mount Rosser Bypass leg, the Caymanas to Linstead section, and the Moneague to Ocho Rios part , then commuters will be able to travel from the capital of Kingston to the north coast town of Ocho Rios in less than one hour.