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Balkan Transport Network Modernization

Tue, 10/13/2015 - 11:08 By Sanja Stamenkovic, Jefferson Institute

On August 27th, 2015 Western Balkans Summit took place in Vienna. European institutions announced 200 million euro grant for co-financing 10 energy and transportation projects. The total value of the projects is estimated to be around 600 million euros. This infrastructure projects will only include Western Bakans countries in the process of EU integration - Serbia, Montenegro, Bosnia, Albania and Macedonia. 

When it comes to Bulgarian border regions, the road network is the longest in Serbian region of Pčinja (2,746 km). Some of the Bulgarian border regions will participate in the EU grants project. Some of the investment will be focused to road sections from Niš to Priština, and from Priština to Bulgarian border.

Some of the EU funds are planned to reconstruct rail network from Niš to Bulgarian border and from Beljakovce to Bulgarian border. 

In september 2015, Serbian Minister of Construction Zorana Mihajlovic said 500 kilometers of railroad network to be modernized in the next three years, TANJUG reports. It was about time, since the Serbian trains are now slower than almost a half a century ago. The average speed of the Serbian train is less than a 40 km per hour

The Bulgarian rail network is more than 4000 km long, with most part of it electrified. Although railway lines had not been expanded since the 1980s', in 2012 top speed of the high-speed railroad line was raised to 200km/h.  

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