EU, BiH sign grant agreement worth €15 million

NEWS 01.08.2019 11:51
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Source: VM BiH

The agreement on the European Union grant of €15 million was signed Thursday to co-finance the new section of Corridor Vc between Johovac and Rudanka, near Doboj, between Bosnia and Herzegovina and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD).

With this new section of Corridor Vc, the completion of Bosnia and Herzegovina’s main transport corridor is coming a step closer. The EU grant worth €15 million will be channelled through the Western Balkans Investment Framework (WBIF) and will complement a loan by the EBRD of up to €70 million.

“This €15 million grant is one out of 11 projects funded by the European Union in Bosnia and Herzegovina as part of the Connectivity Agenda with a total of €217 million approved for BiH so far. At the recently held Western Balkans 6 Summit in Poznan, Poland, the EU endorsed a new Connectivity package that fulfils our € 1 billion pledge to the Western Balkans. BiH is a large recipient of these grants. Four of out of twelve new projects approved in Poznan are in BiH. These grants will be leveraging additional investments to build infrastructure to the benefit of citizens and the economy,” Head of the EU Delegation and EU Special Representative in Bosnia Ambassador Lars-Gunnar Wigemark said.

Corridor Vc is the main international transport corridor in Bosnia and Herzegovina, which support economic development and contribute to regional integration by improving connectivity within Bosnia and Herzegovina and with its neighbouring countries.

“We are pleased to sign this agreement today which illustrates the good progress that is being made with the construction of Corridor Vc. We are confident that establishing better links within the country and connecting it better with Europe will serve the cause of deeper integration, and not only economically,” Ian Brown, Head of EBRD Office in Bosnia and Herzegovina, said

The new motorway section will connect to the Banja Luka – Doboj motorway and complement other current and planned investments in the northern and southern parts of Corridor Vc in Bosnia and Herzegovina. It will improve travel conditions, reduce congestion and provide local employment during the construction phase. The new motorway will also improve road safety as it will reduce the heavy traffic that currently passes through the town of Doboj and local villages.

„Such agreements help boost local companies, create new jobs, and eventually enable us to move towards the EU in terms of transport links. As a result, we will have new motorways, bridges and faster links with the rest of the world, and all this will result in further economic growth,” said Vjekoslav Bevanda, Minister of Finance and Treasury of BiH.

Corridor Vc is expected to be completed by 2030 with the total cost estimated to be approximately €4 billion. Under the Connectivity Agenda, the European Union has set aside up to €1 billion in grants for the period of 2014-2020 through the WBIF to complement the loans from international financial institutions.