Burhan Baran asks about the road to Bulgaria

Western Thrace
Wed, 20 Dec 2023 8:42 GMT
Burhan Baran, PASOK MP for Xanthi, brought the problems in the construction of the motorway that will connect Greece and Bulgaria through the village of Demircik in Xanthi to the parliamentary agenda. He noted that the second phase of the project, the Demircik - Elmali section, is uncertain and this situation raises questions about the functionality of the project.
Burhan Baran asks about the road to Bulgaria

Referring to the problems created by the completed section of the motorway so far for the residents of the village of Demircik, Burhan Baran, in his parliamentary question to the Minister of Transport Christos Staikouras, made the following statements "The citizens of Xanthi region and the whole of Thrace have been patiently waiting for many years for the completion of the project, which will improve the commercial activities between Greece and Bulgaria, help the development of relations between Greece and Bulgaria and provide economic benefits. According to ELSTAT data, this project is an important infrastructure project that will bring commercial and touristic life to the region and at the same time make a revitalising contribution to the economy of the second poorest region of our country.

Based on an interview with Mr. Koutsoukos, Managing Director of the Egnatia Company, on the website "ypodomes.com", it is worth mentioning that the delivery of the first section of the road project that will connect the village of Demircik (Dimario) with the Greek - Bulgarian border has been set for the end of the month. This is indeed a very positive development, considering that the specific delivery of the project was finalised with ESPA 2014-2020 funding.

Despite all this, the functionality of the project is still uncertain, as it is directly linked to the construction of the second section, "Demircik (Dimario) - Elmalı (Melivia)".

The reason for the difficulty in completing this road project is unfortunately the two-year-long tender dispute between the two companies (AKTOR ATE - ODOS ATE), which has resulted in a legal dispute. The above legal dispute has undoubtedly led to the loss of funding from ESPA 2014-2020, and in order for the project to proceed, it will have to be re-entered into the new ESPA programming period 2021-2027, which may result in long delays, as the necessary procedures will have to be fulfilled in order for all this to be included in a new programme. Undoubtedly, the ongoing construction of the road project in the village of Demircik (Dimario), which connects the Greek-Bulgarian border, has an extremely negative impact on the people of the village of Demircik (Dimario), who make their living from farming.
On the one hand, the construction of the project did not foresee the creation of a rural road connecting the north and south of the region, which means that access from one point to another is impossible, both for the safety of the inhabitants of the village and for the small livestock that they take care of. On the other hand, the fact that they have been waiting for seven years for the compensation for the damages caused by this project has an extremely negative impact on the inhabitants of the region.

It should not be forgotten that during the technical works, the pipes of the water network were damaged and as a result, the residents of the region faced serious problems in the supply of drinking water, especially in the summer months."

Deputy Baran asked the following questions to the Minister of Transport Staikuras regarding the Bulgarsitan road:

1. What steps do you intend to take to overcome the shortcomings and to ensure that the road project in the village of Demircik (Dimario), which will connect the Greek-Bulgarian border with Bulgaria, will be completed on time and without any problems?

2. Are your immediate plans to correct the deficiencies in infrastructure and solve the problem of adequate water supply so that the residents of Demircik (Dimario) village have easy access to their area?

3. When is the compensation process for village residents for the damage caused by the project expected to be finalised?"

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