Home Page
 
News 30 May 11

Albania Plans Tolls for Kosovo Highway

Albania’s government has announced the introduction of tolls on the country's highways, including the recently completed road to Kosovo, in order to cope with maintenance costs.

Besar Likmeta
Tirana
Albania-Kosovo Highway during construction in 2009 | Photo by : Besar Likmeta

“This country does not have the public capacities for its maintenance,” said Prime Minister Sali Berisha in a cabinet meeting on Wednesday, while explaining that the supervision of the highway will move into private hands and will be financed by tolls.

Berisha also announced that concessions for road management and tolls might be introduced in other sections of the country’s highway network.

“The general road directorate does not have the capacities to manage them,” Berisha explained.

The Albania-Kosovo highway, which links the port of Durres on Albania’s Adriatic coast with Kosovo, is the country largest public works project in decades.

Built by the American-Turkish consortium Bechtel-Enka, the four-lane highway is expected to strengthen the already deep ties between Albania and Kosovo, where more than 90 per cent of the population of 2 million is of Albanian descent.

The one billon euro plus road project, which include a six kilometer long tunnel, has made travel much easier for the hundreds of thousands of Kosovo Albanians who cross the border to take their summer holidays in Albania each year.

The road has been dubbed the “patriotic highway,” reflecting the widely perceived geopolitical motives behind the project – and the fact that no feasibility study was ever undertaken into the possible return on investment for the massive undertaking.

Corruption allegations and cost overruns have led many to question the ultimate value of the highway's construction.

Talk about it!

blog comments powered by Disqus

Premium Selection

leader-of-eu-greens-slams-bulgaria-over-ski-resort-expansion-01-18-2018
19 Jan 18

EU Green Leader Condemns Threat to Bulgarian National Park

The European Greens co-president Ska Keller tells BIRN of her grave concerns for the future of the UNESCO-protected Pirin National Park, after Bulgaria's government approved plans to expand the ski resort there.

vucic-visits-kosovo-to-benefit-politically-experts-say-01-18-2018
19 Jan 18

Vucic Visiting Kosovo to Profit Politically, Experts Say

Saturday's planned visit to Kosovo by Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic – following the assassination of Kosovo Serb leader Oliver Ivanovic – is being seen as a point-scoring exercise.

18 Jan 18

Murder Puts Serbia-Kosovo Dialogue in Doubt

17 Jan 18

How Rich Are the Balkans’ Top Politicians?

Latest News from the Balkans

20 Jan 18

Romanians Resume Anti-Corruption Protests

19 Jan 18

Russia Slaps New Ban on Bosnian Apples

19 Jan 18

Duma Slates Moldova's Ban on Russian TV Shows