Technical studies for a second Salang tunnel will be complete within six months, Afghan officials said Wednesday.
Afghanistan's Ministry of Public Works said that US Agency of International Development (USAID) has started studying plans to construct the second tunnel in Salang and the cost of the project will be specified once the study is complete.
Public Works Minister Najibullaj Ozhan has said that USAID and the World bank have shown an interest in helping pay the costs of the project.
He said the new tunnel aims to decrease the problems of travelling on the Salang highway, on which seven thousands vehicles travel daily.
"There would less risk of snow avalanches, and a less winding road in the new tunnel," he said, adding that the current tunnel which was built during the Soviet era needed repair.
He also said the new tunnel will stretch further than the current tunnel, but the new road will be 30-40 kilometres shorter when comparing equal distances.
The new tunnel will reach from the Olang region in Parwan province to DoShakh in Baghlan province, going through the mountains of the Hindu Kush.