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DHAKA, Sept 29 (Reuters) - The Asian Development Bank (ADB) said on Thursday it will lend Bangladesh $8 billion in low-interest loans over the next five years to improve infrastructure.
The ADB said it "will increase public- and private-sector lending to Bangladesh to $8.0 billion for 2016 through 2020 to help the country build the infrastructure and skills needed for a strong, diversified economy and to strengthen trade links within the region."
The lending will be focused on easing infrastructure constraints, boosting human capital, developing economic corridors, improving rural livelihoods, and providing climate- and disaster-resilient infrastructure and services.
The total lending includes a $1.5 billion loan to build a railway line that will bring trade and tourism to southern parts of Bangladesh, and improve access to Myanmar and elsewhere in Southeast Asia.
Poor infrastructure is often cited as one of the major hindrances to growth in the South Asian country of 160 million people.
The ADB, which is based in Manila and dominated by Japan and the United States, lent more than $5.0 billion to Bangladesh between 2011-2015.
Reporting by Ruma Paul; Editing by Simon Cameron-Moore