Montenegro will propose joint construction of a highway to Serbia

European Commission spokesman Peter Stano. [European Commission/screenshot]

European Commission spokesman Peter Stano said on Monday the EU would not help Montenegro repay a loan it had taken from a Chinese bank for the construction of a highway.

On Monday, Montenegro’s Minister of Capital Investments Mladen Bojanić said he would propose to his Serbian counterpart, Tomislav Momirović, that the two countries jointly apply for funds for the completion of the north-south highway from Belgrade to Bar.

The problematic part is in Montenegro, from Bar to Boljare on the Serbian border, which is being built by Chinese company China Road and Bridge Corporation (CRBC). Montenegro took a loan from the Chinese ExIm Bank to cover most of the cost of the highway.

But, the works were delayed and the price soared from the agreed €800 million to €1.3 billion. Minister Bojanić explained that “a new agreement was made (with CRBC), and they committed to complete this section by 30 November”.

He added that Montenegro wants to complete the modernisation of the Belgrade-Bar railway primarily because of the port of Bar, with which the government of the neighbouring country, as he says, has serious plans.  (Željko Trkanjec | EURACTIV.hr)

 

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