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Proposed Nicaragua Canal gets public vote

Discussions over the feasibility and benefits of the Nicaragua Canal proposal undergone a series of twists and turns in recent months. But one piece of good news for the developers is that, in a recent public vote, HKND (Hong Kong Nicaragua Canal Development) received 78 per cent approval for the canal.

The public backing, however, is on condition that the canal route avoids the town of El Tule, which has opposed the project. This will add around US$ 700 million to the cost.

According to some reports, the HKND Group is due to start work soon at Puerto Brito, on the Pacific side, as well as on the Puerto de Punta Águila terminal on the Atlantic side. Expectations remain that main construction will commence by the end of 2015.

Since the project was announced in 2014 the proposed US$ 50 billion canal has been the subject of much debate about its financial feasibility and environmental impact. However, after completion of a feasibility study, a spokesman said: “The project offers potential benefits for the environment and the people of Nicaragua.” The long-awaited investment is reported to have been secured from Europe, Asia and America.

The canal is anticipated to be completed and operational by 2020.