Road Infrastructure Agency Chief Decries Prolonged Underfunding

Politics » DOMESTIC | March 31, 2015, Tuesday // 10:17
Bulgaria: Road Infrastructure Agency Chief Decries Prolonged Underfunding Photo by BGNES

Lazar Lazarov, Chairman of the Management Board of Bulgaria’s Road Infrastructure Agency (RIA), has complained of the decades-long underfunding of the unit.

In a Tuesday interview for the morning broadcast of Nova TV, he pointed out that the only source of revenues for the RIA road repair budget were vignette stickers.

“Revenues from vignette stickers now stand at BGN 200 – 220 M a year,” he said, adding that the proceeds from the sale of vignette stickers first went to the central budget, with the Agency being transferred around half of the total, or BGN 105 M.

Lazarov, as cited by investor.bg, emphasized that at the same time the total budget of the RIA amounted to BGN 240 M, including road repairs and road construction.

He reminded that a portion of fuel excise duty worth billions of leva had gone to road construction several decades ago.

He stated that RIA was plagued by a shortage of BGN 100 M for road repairs, adding that some sections were in appalling condition and required urgent intervention.

Lazarov also commented on the decision to decrease the speed limit on motorway sections with damaged road surface to 90km/h as of April 1.

He made clear that the compromised sections of the Trakia motorway were located around Pazardzhik and Plovdiv, while at the Hemus motorway they were around Shumen.

Lazarov concluded that a well-developed road infrastructure was beneficial to everyone as it helped boost economic growth.

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Tags: Lazar Lazarov, Road Infrastructure Agency, road repairs, road construction, vignette stickers
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