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Burma - Roadways

Among ASEAN countries, Myanmar’s road network expanded to 148,690 km (92,392 mi) as of March 2012 from 90,713km in 2004, road density remains among the lowest in the region. Only 39% (57,840 km) of the network is paved and 61% (90,850 km) unpaved, with the secondary and local road network generally in poor condition and not passable during the monsoon season. The government of Myanmar has two ministries controlling transportation: Ministry of rail transportation and the ministry of transport. The Ministry of construction is responsible for construction and maintenance of roads, bridges and airports. Only 26% of roads (39,083 km) fall under responsibility of the Ministry of Construction.

 Types of Roads :-



Road Description

  Primary Roads

Broad, wide roads : 2 lanes to 4 lanes wide, tarmac or concrete paved. Maximum speed 50-100 km/hr.

 Secondary Roads

Connecting main cities, often in poor condition, mostly 1 lane wide and sometimes 2 lanes wide. Partially paved (tarmac) partially dirt/gravel. Maximum speed 30-60 km/hr.

 Tertiary Roads

Connecting small cities and villages, 1 lane wide, often in poor condition, unpaved, dirt roads. Maximum speed 10-30 km/hr.


Connecting villages, very narrow, less then 1 lane wide, sometimes only passable by motorbike. unpaved, dirt tracks. Max speed 0-20 km/hr.


The primary roads in Myanmar are:

•1577 km : Runs from Myawaddi (Thai border)-Thaton-Payagyi-Nay Pyi Taw-Meiktila-Mandalay-Gangaw-Kale-Tamu (India border) (AH-1).
• 804 km: Runs from Tachileik (Thai border)-Keng Tung-Taunggyi-Meiktila-Mandalay-Gangaw-Kale-Tamu (India border) (AH-2).
• 90 km; Runs from AH-2 at Keng Tung-Mongla (PR China border) (AH-3).
• 460 km: Runs from Mandalay-Lashio-Muse (PR China border) (AH-14).
• 250 km: Runs from Thaton-Mawlamyine-Dawei-Myeik-Kawthaung (AH-112).
• 196 km: Runs from Yangon-Kyaunggon-Pathein (Western Union highway).
• 279 km: Runs from Yangon-Tharrawaddy-Pyay (Route 2).
• 134 km: Runs from Dawei-Sinbhyudaing (Tikee) (to Thai border) (AH-123).

Primary supply corridors and main border crossings are:

·         AH-1: North-West to South-East: from North-East India, Guwahati to East Thailand, Bangkok. Border crossing at Tamu (India) and Myawaddi (Thailand).

·         AH-2: Connecting at AH-1 central to East: North Thailand, Chiang Rai. Border crossing at Tachileik (Thailand).

·         AH-3: Connecting at AH-2, North-East: China, Kunming. Border crossing at Mongla (China).

·         AH-14: Connecting at AH-1 central to North East: China, Kunming. Border crossing at Muse (China).

·         AH-123: The border crossing at Tikee is used by locals for cross-border trade but requires special permission for foreigners to cross; it has been used by UNHCR. There is another border crossing in Kayin state near Ye (Mon state) the “Three Pagoda Pass”, which remains closed.

 AH-1: The Yangon-Mandalay expressway or Bagan highway is the only expressway in Myanmar featuring a double carriageway and four lanes in good condition on its entire length of 587km. This express way runs from Yangon via Nay Pyi Taw, Meikthila to Mandalay. Trucks are not allowed to use this expressway and must use the old Yangon-Mandalay highway instead, which runs parallel to the Bagan highway.

With improvements made in recent years, the condition of the old Yangon-Mandalay highway is now good. This road is two lanes wide in most places and four lanes in some parts close to Yangon and Mandalay. Private cars rarely use this route because the Bagan highway is shorter, this road is mostly used for cargo traffic.

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