Construction on the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau Bridge is expected to start by year's end, Hong Kong ‘s Chief Secretary Henry Tang said on Monday, adding its completion “will benefit the three jurisdictions”.

The Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau Bridge is a series of bridges and tunnels that would connect the west side of Hong Kong to Macau and the mainland Chinese city of Zhuhai, which are situated on the west side of the Pearl River Delta.

The project was proposed by Gordon Wu, the chairman of Hong Kong-listed Hopewell Holdings Ltd in 1983, to create a world-class transport system for China's manufacturing powerhouse in the Pearl River Delta. With its length of 29 kilometer, it is comparable with the world's longest bridge, the Second Lake Pontchartrain Causeway in the United States, which is 38.4 kilometers long, according to the Guinness Book of World Records.

In order to coordinate the project, Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau Bridge Advance Work Coordination Group was established in 2003. In the second meeting, officials from three sides decided to set up an office specifically in Guangzhou to do the work of the group and appointed a design institute in the Mainland to conduct the feasibility study and produce a report on landing points for the bridge.

After meeting Zhuhai officials in the Mainland city on Monday, Mr Tang said the bridge's engineering feasibility report has been submitted to the Central Government for final approval.

The three governments concerned will strive to start the project by the end of this year, and have it completed in five years, he added.

Noting a trip from Zhuhai to the Hong Kong airport when the bridge opens will be cut to 20 minutes - even faster than travelling from the Central District, Mr Tang said the link will enable people to go to each of the three places within an hour.

This, he said, will give much room for the three jurisdictions to plan developments for mutual benefits.