2011 has seen the best performance under OP Transport. Grant aid agreements for almost 2.240 milliard BGN have been signed since the beginning of the year. Thus the total amount of contracted funds under the programme add up to slightly over 3.411 milliard BGN.
Over 888 million BGN have been paid to beneficiaries, of which 668 million BGN in 2011. This is the first time during the current year that a serious growth of certified funds has been reported as these already exceed 893 million BGN. These are actually absorbed funds that have passed the whole procedure of inspection and approval at national and European level. Since the beginning of the programming period eight application forms have been submitted, of which five in 2011. Five application forms have been approved as the notification about three of them has come during the present year.
The most recent project having received the green light from Brussels is: Electrification and reconstruction of Plovdiv-Svilengrad railway line along corridors IV and IX, stage 2, Purvomai-Svilengrad. This is the biggest infrastructure project of the Railway Infrastructure National Company that is with bridge financing - from ISPA programme to OP Transport.
The European Commission decision of 22 December 2011 ensures EU financing for the completion of the Dimitrovgrad-Svilengrad section. The construction of the other ISPA-financed sections along the Plovdiv-Svilengrad line are at a final stage. Act 15 has been granted for two sections (Kroumovo-Purvomai and Purvomai-Dimitrovgrad) and tests of the track and the contact network at a speed of 160 km/h are going on. The remaining part of the section Svilengrad-Turkish border will be completed in the summer of 2012 with funds of OP Transport.
The construction of Maritsa and Strouma motorways was launched in 2011. The good pace of work on Trakiya Motorway has been preserved. A new road junction at Stara Zagora, being a part of Lot 2 of the motorway, was unveiled in October. The Sofia underground extension project has entered its final stage as 18 new underground trains were purchased with funds under the operational programme.
All these results show that OP Transport is one of the best ranking operational programmes in terms of contracted and paid funds.