Multi-lateral lending agency Asian Development Bank (ADB) today said it will provide loan worth USD 2 billion to construct or upgrade over 31,000 kms of rural roads in five states to lend support to Prime Minister’s Gram Sadak Yojana (PMGSY).

"ADB is providing about USD 2 billion loans through its three long-term investment programmes to build and improve rural roads in five states of Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, West Bengal, Odisha and Assam," ADB Country Director in India M Teresa Kho was quoted as saying in an official statement.

Kho was here to unveil ‘India Development Effectiveness Brief 2014’ publication.

"Improved rural connectivity is already showing results in the form of more employment opportunities, better remuneration for farmers’ produce, improved health indicators and better school enrolment in rural areas," Kho added. She further said that more than 12,500 previously unserved habitations are being connected in the five states through building new stretches of rural roads.

ADB-supported Rural Roads Sector Investment Programmes (RRS-I and II) built or upgraded more than 22,000 kms of rural roads.

The ongoing Rural Connectivity Investment Programme aims to build over 9,000 kms of roads to unconnected habitations in the five states, as per the statement.

Support to rural roads constitutes about 60 per cent of ADB’s total lending in the transport sector in India that includes state and national highways, it added.

Besides, ADB said that India continues to remain its largest borrower.

Beginning 1986 and till December 2014, ADB has approved 189 sovereign loans totalling USD 31.3 billion.

It has also approved 50 non-sovereign loans, equity investments, and guarantees totalling USD 3.6 billion.

The bank plans to lend about USD 3 billion to India for various projects during 2015, ADB said.