OSMANI: WE BUILD A HIGHWAY BETWEEN MACEDONIA AND KOSOVO, CREATING EUROPEAN FUTURE FOR BOTH COUNTRIES
Today, the Secretariat for European
Affairs was marked the start of the project for construction of the highway
Skopje-Blace, Stenkovec interchange, where Deputy Prime Minister in charge of
European Affairs Bujar Osmani, Minister of Transport and Communications Goran
Sugareski, the representative of company and team project leader Martin
Osborne, as well as the Director of the Public Enterprise for State Roads,
Zoran Kitanov had their address.
"We finally put a
fullstop on the highway connection between Macedonia and Kosovo, marking the
formal start of the project Skopje-Blace", Osmani stressed, pointing out
that the project is of strategic importance to our country for several
reasons: as a project which connects Skopje and Prishtina with a highway;
project which is part of the so called "Connectivity" agenda for
connecting the countries of the Western Balkans; but also a highway that will
facilitate trade promotion, that will provide potential for economic progress,
business potential, etc.
"With this project, not
only Macedonia and Kosovo are becoming closer neighbours, but both countries
are creating corridors for promotion of European connections, building a
European future for both countries," Osmani said. He emphasized that a
grant of EUR 1.3 million of IPA funds is provided for this project, which are
non-refundable; for the construction of the road, financial support within the
Western Balkans Investment Framework (WBIF) of EUR 27 million was also
requested, as well as non-refundable funds; and for the rest, Osmani said that
a loan was requested from the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development
as the main financier of the project.
Minister of Transport and Communications Goran Sugareski, as well as the
Director of the Public Enterprise for State Roads Zoran Kitanov addressed the
press conference. They pointed out that for faster implementation of the
project, the construction of the Skopje-Blace highway is divided into two
sub-branches, in order to complete the project more quickly and to start the
construction works on the shorter section. The first section of length of about
2.0 km, starts from BP "Blace" to the first interchange
"Blace", ie the connection with the local road to the village Blace,
for whose construction and monitoring are provided funds from the budget of the
Public Enterprise for State Roads and whose implementation is expected to be
started sooner. The second subsection is from the interchange "Blace"
to Skopje (the "Stenkovec" intersection), about 10.5 km long, as the
speakers explained, and it is a complex construction project, which will have 4
tunnels with a length of about 4 km, 8 bridges and other supporting facilities.
The implementation of this project is expected to last three years.