20th September 2019, Skopje – Faster transport, easier flow of vehicles without traffic jam and electronic tolling system throughout the country will be provided under the Project for Construction and Installation of the Electronic Tolling System along Corridor VIII and the Highway Miladinovci Shtip – for which Financing Agreements were signed today in the Ministry of Finance. Agreements were signed by Minister of Finance Nina Angelovska, EBRD Head of North Macedonia Andi Aranitasi and the Director of the Public Enterprise for State Roads Zoran Kitanov, being also attended by Minister of Transport and Communications Goran Sugareski.
Total value of the projects is 13.7 million euros, 13 million out of which has been provided from the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development and 700, 000 euros have been provided from the budget of the Public Enterprise for State Roads.
-Investments in the road infrastructure is one of the key priorities of this Government. Improving the services the country provides to the citizens, is also our priority. Therefore, the Agreement we are signing today with the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development is of exceptional importance for all of us. The implementation of this Agreement will provide for faster and easier transport, without traffic jam on the toll stations, greater transport safety, and introduction of electronic tolling system throughout the territory of the country – Minister of Finance Nina Angelovska said.
She went on that the project will also provide for improving the efficiency of the toll collection, for the purpose of increasing the revenues of the Public Enterprise for State Roads, which will be used for improving the maintenance of the road network in the country.
The Project envisages upgrading and modernization of the existing toll stations on Corridor VIII, as well as the construction of three new toll stations on the highway sections that are being built – two on Miladinovci Stip highway, and one on Kicevo-Ohrdi highway. It also envisages installation of equipment to link the upgraded and new toll stations to the Toll Operation Centre in Petrovec. Funds have been allocated for design and construction of an additional lane to increase the capacity of the Miladinovci toll station on Corridor VIII. Photo voltaic solar panels will be installed on all existing and new toll stations that are being built on the entire motorway network in the Republic of North Macedonia. Under the Project, funds are also envisaged for maintenance and mandatory spare parts for the existing toll stations along Corridor VII and three new toll stations on the highway sections.
EBRD Head stressed that the Bank has provided support for seven projects in the road infrastructure in the country in the amount of EUR 360 million. He pointed out that this Project was actually second phase of the implementation of the centralized electronic tolling system.
-The Project will support usage of renewable energy generated by photovoltaic solar panels to power all toll stations nationwide. At the same time, this Project will contribute to the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions due to the decrease of the waiting time for road users on Corridor VIII. – Arantisai,EBRD Head of North Macedonia said.
Minister of Transport and Communications Sugareski underluined that the electronic tolling system is part of the Intelligent Transport System, which will modernize the transport and increase its functionality, as well as the safety and the predictability of the traffic on the roads.
-Our final goal is to create harmonized transport sector, integrated in the European system of transport network, which will stimulate the economic growth of the country, and which will be beneficial for the citizens today, as well as the future generations – Sugareski said.
Director of the Public Enterprise for State Roads Kitanov stressed that the Project is expected to contribute to increased flow of vehicles and respective increase of revenues collected on the basis of tolls. At the same time the Project will also provide for better convenience for the final road beneficiaries, significant reduction of the possibility for manipulations and establishment of an interoperable electronic toll collection system with state-of-the-art technology.
Conditions under which the EBRD loan will be financed are exceptionally favourable- interest rate is 6-month EURIBOR increased by 1% margin (that is 1% interest at the moment) and 15 and a half year-repayment period with 4-year grace period.