Albania awards contract for rehabilitation of railway network

WCN Editorial Team 4 Feb 2021 EUROPE TRANSPORT INFRASTRUCTURE

Albania state railways has awarded a contract to Italian company INC Spa for the large scale rehabilitation of railway network.

As per the contract, over 34km of the existing railway track between the capital city Tirana and the port of Durres, the country’s largest port and a key regional hub for international trade, will be repaired.

Another 5km long new rail track will be constructed, connecting Tirana city to the Tirana International Airport.

The rehabilitation work will help in safer and faster travel as against the present average of less than 60 km per hour.

Under the Connectivity Agenda for the Western Balkans programme, the EU has supported the rehabilitation project with a grant of  €35.5m, while European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) has provided a loan of €36.9m for the project.

Through the Western Balkans Investment Framework, the project secured an additional €2.75m from bilateral donors.

Once the project is completed, it will boost connectivity within the country.

EBRD head of Albania Matteo Colangeli said: “This strategic infrastructure project will make a tangible difference to people and businesses in Albania and across the region. It will improve people’s daily lives and unlock new trade opportunities.

“As the first investment in the rehabilitation of the railways network in Albania, the project will also contribute to the long-term goal of building green, sustainable and integrated economies in the Western Balkans.”

EBRD so far has provided more than €1.5bn in loans to a total of 110 projects in Albania.

The support by EU for the country’s transport sector has touched about €250m.

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Over 34km of the existing railway track between the capital city Tirana and the port of Durres, will be rehabilitated. . (Credit: European Bank for Reconstruction and Development)

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