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Meeting on the financing of Corridor 8 railway slated for December

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Western Balkan leaders and transport ministers at a meeting on Dec. 6-7 with representatives of the World Bank and the European Investment Bank (EIB) will discuss financing and construction of a railway on Corridor 8 linking Macedonia, Bulgaria and Albania.

Corridor 8 will be a priority in terms of its implementation since it is expected to offer a myriad of opportunities for cooperation and to accelerate flow of passengers and goods, the premiers of Macedonia and Bulgaria, Zoran Zaev and Boyko Borissov, said Thursday after a joint government session.

“Truly, one of our biggest wish is to be able to travel from Skopje to Sofia much faster, instead of taking some four to five hours, and to travel using a nice highway and a nice railway. This is what Corridor 8 means – an array of opportunities for the citizens of the entire region,” PM Zaev said answering journalist questions at a news conference alongside Borissov.

According to PM Borissov, there’s huge interest to finance the project. “On Dec. 6-7 we will be a step ahead,” he noted.

Bulgaria has completed projects and has already determined the cost of the Skopje-Sofia railway on its territory, said Borissov.

Macedonia is yet to provide finances for the railway’s third section, from Kriva Palanka to the border with Bulgaria.

Conditions should be created in the coming six months paving the way for enforcing the memorandum on cutting roaming charges between Macedonia and Bulgaria, signed today as part of the joint government session in Strumica, according to the Macedonian PM.

“It gives me great pleasure because it will enable cheap communication and when there’s communication, there’s business and cooperation, cultural exchange and everything that is in the interest of the citizens,” Zaev told reporters.