31st May 2022, Skopje – Supplementary Budget projects more than half a billion euros, i.e. EUR 523.6 million, allocated for infrastructure projects. Investments include Road and Rail Corridors 8 and 10, construction of national gas pipelines, major projects in the field of environment, health, education, etc. Public investments in infrastructure are especially important for boosting the economic activity, as well as attracting foreign investors. As Nobel Prize winner Paul Krugman pointed out at the Skopje Economic Finance Forum – SEFF, attracting foreign investors requires ambitious agenda on infrastructure projects.
– “What is needed now, and I believe you address this issue, is to make sure that if you want, for instance, factories from the Netherlands, Germany, to shift the production here, the most important therefore is the transportation infrastructure”, Krugman said at the opening day of SEFF.
Improving the infrastructure is one of the priorities of the Government, the high amount of investments projected in the 2022 Budget and the Supplementary Budget speaking in support thereof. Capital investments are projected in the amount of Denar 32.2 billion, being by 37.8% higher compared to last year. Significant investments are envisaged to be made in road infrastructure, such as Corridors 8 and 10, including Tetovo – Gostivar section/highway extension, construction of Trebenishta – Struga – Kjafasan highway, as well as construction of Gostivar – Bukojchani highway section, Prilep – Bitola section, Rankovce – Kriva Palanka section and Kriva Palanka – Bulgarian border, Kichevo – Bukojchani highway section and Kichevo – Ohrid highway section. Construction of Skopje – Blace motorway section, Shtip – Radovis road section, etc. is also envisaged.
This year’s SEFF is titled “Sustaining Growth in Times of Uncertainty and Beyond”. At the first day, the participants, among which government representatives from the region, high representatives of IFIs, business community representatives and experts debated on fiscal and monetary policies and regional cooperation. The debate continues today, covering green transition, infrastructure, connectivity and trade, financial innovations and investments under uncertainty, new challenges to good governance and human capital in 21st century.
SEFF is designed to operate as a platform for economic and financial dialogue. The goal is to encourage all stakeholders to offer solutions to be used in coping with the challenges we face at the moment, as well as solutions for better future.