Brazil will invest $66 billion in its crumbling road and rail infrastructure in a bid to fix transport bottlenecks and drive the economy, it was reported Thursday.
President Dilma Rousseff said the investment will include the laying of 6,200 miles of train tracks and building or widening 4,660 miles of federal highways, the Associated Press said. Rousseff added that announcements about similar schemes for airports, waterways and ports would follow.
"We're starting an initial stage from which Brazil will emerge richer and stronger. ... Brazil will finally have an infrastructure that's compatible with its size," Rousseff said.
Brazil has seen strong gains in its economy over the past decade tail off in the past year, with economists predicting a GDP growth rate of around 1.8 percent for 2012.
The country's second-rate transport infrastructure has long been cited by economists as a constraint on further growth, as the South American giant struggles to get its abundant natural resources to hungry global markets.
A recent World Economic Forum report ranked Brazil 104 out of 142 nations surveyed for the quality of their transport networks.
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