An all Albanian meeting of representatives of the Macedonian and Albanian railways focused on building a railway link between the two countries.
Macedonia set as priority building a railway link to Bulgaria, still bearing the bitter memories of the Greek and Serbian embargoes in the early 1990-ies which forced the country to supply itself through truck convoys via Bulgaria. But the project has progresses glacially for the past three decades, and recently a German company hired to build this section gave up on the project citing problems working with the Macedonian Government.
Under the new Zaev led Government, the Macedonian railways company was placed under the management of an official named by the ethnic Albanian DUI party – Festim Halili – and he is wasting no time to advance an alternative Corridor 8 project – building a railroad to Albania. Halili and Deputy Transportation Minister Bekim Rexhepi – another ethnic Albanian, met with their counterparts from the Republic of Albania Artan Shkreli anjd Ani Durmishi to discuss the new project. Halili said that this does not mean giving up on the railroad link to Bulgaria, which he said is still under construction.
The idea is to rebuild the railway link from Kicevo to Ohrid, which used to have a narrow gauge railway that has been disused for decades, and to expand it to the border with Albania. This would provide Macedonia with a link to the port of Durres. Meanwhile, a project to build a highway from Kicevo to Ohrid in cooperation with a Chinese company has been badly neglected since Zaev grabbed power in 2017.