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Bulgaria to apply for EU funding for Struma Motorway in two stages

Bulgaria to apply for EU funding for Struma Motorway in two stagesBulgaria will apply for EU funds to build the Struma Motorway in two stages, Regional Development Minister Rossen Plevneliev said on July 11 2011.

According to preliminary estimates, the 133km Struma Motorway will cost slightly less than 1.1 billion euro, of which 80 per cent will be provided under the Transport operational programme, while the remainder will come from the European Investment Bank (EIB).

By the end of July, the Road Infrastructure Agency (RIA) will apply for financing for the first (Dolna Dikanya-Doupnitsa), second (Doupnitsa-Blagoevgrad) and fourth (Sandanski-Koulata) sections of the motorway to the managing authority of the Transport operational programme.

Documentation for Struma's third section, linking Blagoevgrad and Sandanski, is expected to be drafted by the end of 2011 and submitted separately, Plevneliev said. The project envisions the construction of a 13.3km tunnel under the Kresna Gorge, which is intended to protect from noise, pollution and damage of protected species habitat areas included in the Natura 2000 Network.

The complex facility is the reason for the high price of Struma, with initial estimates pegging the third section's prices at 900 million euro.

12 July 2011 - Dnevnik

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