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The approximately $485 million- agreement with CHEC establishes improvements on a 107-kilometer of Route 32.
- CHEC Costa Rica courtesy photo -


Published Thursday, September 17, 2020

$485 million deal to improve route 32
delayed, Chinese company said

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Zhou Jingxiong, manager of the CHEC Costa Rica company, recognized delays in the expansion and improvement works of National Route No. 32, but continues with the goal of ending the works in the last months of 2021.

Jingxiong realized his statement in a hearing before the deputies of the Special Infrastructure Commission of Congress.

CHEC Costa Rica is a representation of the Chinese construction company China Harbor Engineering Company, CHEC. The company is in charge of the construction of the expansion and improvements in the Braulio Carrillo highway, so-called Route 32, in the zone between Frío River and Limón Province.

According to Jingxiong, the delays are due to expropriation processes of properties that are still located along Route 32. Resulting in a domino effect of slowing down the much awaited repairs from the progress of construction, to the hiring of workers who do not live in the province of Limón and purchasing materials in the sale of inputs such as stone and sand. Those specific materials can not easily be bought, since the only company that supplies it in the Limón area does not have an operating permit.

According to Deputy David Gourzong-Cerdas, the President of Costa Rica, Carlos Alvarado, said in a meeting that he had personally invited the President of China, Xi Jinping, to visit the country next year. The year 2021 marks the 200th anniversary of Costa Rica's independence, which can also serve to inaugurate Route 32.

In response to the comments of Deputy Gourzong, Jingxiong said that the invitation made by President Alvarado was also made known by the CHEC company.

According to the Deputy Yorleni León -Marchena, this year a court already approved advancing 430 expropriations of properties and many of these are located on Route 32. This delay of the project over 2 years has not only been the responsibility of the company, they also have not done things as they have to be.

“But if someone has been responsible for the delay in this works on Route 32, and with all the evidence of the case, it has been the government through the Executing Unit, CONAVI and others (referring to public institutions), we have been talking about expropriations for more than two years,” León said.

During the hearing, Deputy Luis Ramón Carranza-Cascante said he was disappointed by the construction delays and he regrets that a project of such importance for the country has not been completed. "Route 32 is an artery for the country, you are hired to work on this artery that cries out for agility to export goods to the world. As a legislator and a Costa Rican, I feel disappointed because we want to see works (referring to results)," he said.

The approximately $485 million- agreement with CHEC establishes improvements on a 107-kilometer of Route 32.

The construction was scheduled to have been finished in October of this year, but following a request made by the Chinese company, the date of the works were rescheduled to March 2021. However, in the hearing before the deputies, the president of the company announced that it is estimated that the works can be completed until the end of 2021.

What roads that need to be repaired in your community? 
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