10th September 2019, Skopje – Schools, kindergartens, local roads, photovoltaic systems, water treatment plant, and improvement of the irrigation systems are only part of the 135 capital projects in the total amount of Denar 1.3 billion realized through the Municipal Services Improvement Project – MSIP in the rural areas of 78 municipalities throughout the country. Projects have been realized within EU IPA grant, with World Bank support.
This was underlined at the final event related to the EU IPA grant for rural infrastructure attended by Prime Minister Zoran Zaev, Minister of Finance Nina Angelovska, EU ambassador Samuel Žbogar, World Bank Country Manager for Macedonia, Marko Mantovanelli, as well as 78 mayors.
Infrastructure development of rural areas is crucial for the economic growth. Inhabited areas Zrnovci, Sopiste and Bardovci obtained new kindergartens, and by transforming the municipal facilities, Kuklis and Murtino also obtained kindergartens. More than 400 are being taken care of as a result of these investments. Local Road Obednik – Smilevo – St. Petar Monastery – Boiste, has been built, as well as the road from Sirkovo Village to Rosoman Village. Water supply system in Gevgelija has also been improved, whereby 19 thousand inhabitants benefited from its construction. At the same time, factory for potable water in Trsino Village, Vinica Municipality is being built. We, as Government and me as a Prime Minister of the Republic of North Macedonia, are committed to providing equal living conditions for all citizens. Therefore, I am pleased that 98 percent of the capital projects has been realized within this Project – Prime Minister Zaev said.
Minister of Finance Nina Angelovska said to the mayors that there should be a road and safe drinking water for every home, as well as modern schools, and much cleaner environment. She expressed assurance that this might became a reality in only several years by lot of efforts put, hard work and vision.
“It is inadmissible for the parent to worry whether his/her child would have a classroom, or whether the classroom has enough light, or whether they have safe drinking water. This what we are obliged to do. It is our duty to eliminate the challenges for the parents if we want to ensure better conditions for the future generations. It is up to us to provide for facilitating and improving the life of all citizens. We have to ensure equal development of every region since only than we could talk about progress. We cannot talk about a modern country if we do not have storm water network in place. We cannot allow for Kiro Gligorov School to be the only contemporary school. Many more such schools are necessary.
We invest in our personal growth and future through capital investments – Minister said.
EU Ambassador in the Republic of North Macedonia, Samuel Žbogar, said that with a robust package of over 15 million euros, the EU, over a period of 4 years, helped the Republic of North Macedonia to make changes for its population. Even more importantly, he said, these changes were made in the rural areas that have not always received the required attention.
– Thanks to the new roads, inhabitants of Bosilovo, Debar and Makedonska Kamenica can now commute easily to the closest institutions and hospitals. Locals from Chucher Sandevo and Frangovo have access to proper sewage system, which is not only to the benefit of their health, but also of the environment. Pre-school children of Bardovci are now spending their time in a refurbished kindergarten next to their homes – Žbogar said.
World Bank Country Manager for Macedonia, Marko Mantovanelli stressed the successful trilateral cooperation with the Ministry of Finance and the EU Delegation in Skopje, which, as he said, resulted in successful completion of all planned activities in the municipalities throughout the Republic of North Macedonia.
“Through the projects realized within MSIP, more than 23,350 piped household water connections benefited from rehabilitation works, while 524,500 citizens were provided with access to regular solid waste collection. The Project also contributed to improvement of 149.9 km of local roads, and by March 2020, it is expected to reach the target of 209 km improved local roads”, – he pointed out.
As for the projects realized through EU IPA grant for rural infrastructure, Mantovanelli said that this program was demand-driven and was able to support any type of rural infrastructure that municipalities see as their priority.
– As such, more than 60 percent of the implemented projects were about road infrastructure, while some of the investments went for improvement of public building, water supply, sanitation services and storm water network – he added.