The OP Transport Monitoring Committee held its 10th meeting under the presidency of Minister of Transport, Information Technologies and Communications Ivailo Moskovski.
It was reported at the meeting that the funds contracted under OP Transport top 2 milliard BGN. The contracted funds are 53 per cent of the programme's budget. Of them, 10 per cent have already been paid to beneficiaries. An impressive increase in contracted funds was reported for the axis financing railway projects - they now stand at 78% of the available financing and are expected to reach 100% by the year's end. Also, 39% of the financing for road projects and 88% of the funds for intermodal transport have been contracted.
The priority projects of the beneficiaries for the next programming period were also presented at the forum. The Railway Infrastructure National Company said its top priority was to complete the stretch of the railway linking Dragoman, Sofia, Plovdiv and Svilengrad, which will not be completed during this programming period. In addition, a Vidin-Sofia project is being prepared.
The Road Infrastructure Agency has confirmed that seven motorways and seven high-speed stretches would be completed by the end of the next programming period. A contractor has been selected for the third line of Sofia's underground railway, which is likely to be executed after 2013.
The European Commission representatives hailed the fact that the Hemous Motorway has been included in the trans-European corridors. However, they tipped off the beneficiaries to be careful in the priority setting for the next programming period. Minister Ivailo Moskovski recalled that Bulgaria is the only country crossed by five transport corridors, which us a serious commitment but also gives grounds to insist on solid financing.
Invited at the forum were also potential beneficiaries of the next programming period - the Bulgarian State Railways (BDZ) Holding and the Maritime Administration Executive Agency. They presented their pre-project ideas, as BDZ has identified a need for EU financing for new rolling stock.
The Monitoring Committee meeting was attended by representatives of the European Commission, of the executive and local authorities, NGOs and trade unions.