Bulgaria's EU Transport Funding in 2014-2020 to Suffice for 3 Major Projects
The money Bulgaria will receive under the Transport Operational Program in the next programming period will suffice for the construction of three major road infrastructure projects, according to Regional Development Minister Lilyana Pavlova.
Speaking Monday during the 7th annual meeting of the government and the business sector, Pavlova made clear that the funding under OP Transport for the 2014-2020 programming period would go to the construction of three major road infrastructure projects, including the completion of the Struma Highway and the Hemus Highway, and the construction of the tunnel under the Shipka peak.
Bulgaria's Regional Development Minister informed that the ongoing OP Transport had been contracted to nearly 100%, the only remaining project to be built with funding under the program being the high speed road Botevgrad-Mezdra.
Pavlova went on to say that Bulgaria expected to receive around EUR 2 B under the Regional Development Operational Program in the 2014-2020 period.
She pointed out that that the new funds would be spent much more expediently because Bulgaria had learned from the mistakes it made in the ongoing programming period.
She explained that the launch of EU programs had caught many beneficiaries unprepared.
Pavlova argued that the beneficiaries had been administratively and financially unprepared to absorb EU funds, "as a result of which we often negotiated with Brussels the specific targets to which the money under the EU programs would be allocated."
Pavlova went on to say that the participation of the business sector in another EU program, JESSICA, offering access to low-interest financing, was not particularly high.
She suggested that an excellent example of a project under such program would be the construction of a circus in the capital.
Valeri Borisov, Deputy Minister of Transport, Information Technology and Communications, who also took part in the conference, spoke about the establishment of e-government in Bulgaria.
He said that the heavy legal framework was one of the main obstructions for the efficient functioning of the e-government in Bulgaria.
He explained that the Austrian E-Government Act was nine-pages long, compared to 170 pages in Bulgaria, including accompanying laws.
Borisov commented that the funding allocated to the e-government project was adequate but there was still more to be achieved.
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