Vidin-Calafat bridge finished by end 2010

The bridge between Vidin and Calafat (Romania) must become operational by the end of 2010. That was reminded to Bulgarian officials yesterday by Jeroen van Oel, representative of the European Commission’s directorate for regional policy. Mr. Van Oel met Deputy Transport Minister Vessela Gospodinova, Vidin regional governor Krustyu Spassov, Vidim mayor Roumen Vidov and Calafat mayor Petre Traistaru.

The construction schedule has been alternated to include the four-month delay and the bridge is now expected to be finished by April 2010.

Gospodinova said that the delay was first caused because the project proposed by FCC architects was rejected by state’s engineers. Fomento de Construciones y Contratas (FCC) is the Spanish company which was picked for the bridge construction on Bulgarian side. Later, FCC run into regulatory trouble with Romania, but all controversial matters have already been settled, announced Gospodinova.

Funds for the project have been lent by EU’s ISPA aid programme and the EuropeanInvestment bank, which will provide 70 million euro each. German KfW Development Bank has also lend 18 million euro.

Bulgaria will contribute 60 million in the construction works. Gospodinova also announced that Bulgarian Government is prepared to maintain the balance between the sources if the project runs into new delays.
Spanish FCC was given the permission to construct the 1971-metre bridge and the road and rail infrastructure on Bulgarian side.

The whole project is estimated at 236 million euro, 162 million of which will be paid to the Spanish company in charge of the construction.

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