Ramallah city launches China

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RAMALLAH, Nov. 26 (Xinhua) -- Palestinian city of Ramallah celebrated Monday the launch of a massive China-funded project to build ring road connecting the growing city towns and its center to ease traffic problem.

Ramallah city is 19 square km in area and is home to a population of almost 70,000. It is considered the political and economic hub for the Palestinian Authority and developing economy.

The project, funded with over 8 million U.S. dollars, is going to pave nine roads over 7.5 km in length, of which the construction is expected to start by the end of this year and be ready in 14 months.

The funding agreement between the Chinese side and the Ramallah municipality was signed in April 2017.

The project was studied by technical experts from China, and will be a solution to open access to all services in the growing city. It is part of another plan to construct a wider road network to serve the city and its residents.

"With this road, we will be opening room for many Palestinians to make this area available for investments, construction, expanding the city area and increasing jobs in it," Ramallah mayor Mousa Hadid said.

Hadid explained that this project comes as a medium-term solution to the city's growing traffic problem until a larger road network plan is put into action, which requires Israeli permits.

However, the Israeli authorities have still not granted the Palestinian side permission to build this road since it is partially in places classified as Area C, which is under full Israeli control, under the Oslo Accord signed between the Palestine Liberation Organization and Israel in 1993.