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EU Funds Reopen Roadworks

Opportunities for new investors and new jobs and also an increase of GDP will begin flowing this summer after a deal between Greece and the EU will re-open stalled public roadworks projects.

More than 25,000 new jobs will be created with the beginning of public road works across the country in accordance to what the Greek government says, with the Minister of Infrastructure demanding transparency in the procedures.

In the early talks there was a prediction of 37.7 billion euros income from these public road works and today the prediction is at 14.5 billion euros (62% reduction).

For each part of the works in the national road network more than 3.2 billion euros will be disbursed. Specifically for the part of Patra – Pirgos – Chakona Messinias each kilometer will cost 6 million euros. The Olympia road segment will cost 7 million per kilometer and E65 Skarfia Fthiotidas – Karpenissi will cost 5.4 million euros/km. At the same time these public road works will create more than 25,000 new jobs. Also the GDP will rise by 1.5% in a period of three years.

The Greek Parliament voted and passed today the bill for restarting the public road works across Greece. The bill passed with 148 votes. 118 members of Greek Parliament voted against the bill.

The public road works had been halted because of the economic crisis during the last years in the European Union.

These public road works were to start on April, as the Minister of Development had said on January in a common press conference with European commissioner Johannes Hahn. This long delay was due to the negotiations between the Greek government and the 43 European Banks that participate in the European funding for public works in member countries. Negotiations were concluded with the help of the ECB (European Central Bank).

The Minister of Infrastructure, Michalis Hrisochoidis had said last week during his presentation of this bill to the Committee on Production and Trade of the House, that there will be an electronic toll system (e-pass) for the frequent users of these roads with a total deducted cost to them of up to 50%. At the same time he gave reassurances that the alternative road networks will be delivered for public use, soon.

Commissioner Olli Rehn said that restarting these public road works will create new jobs and will draw new investment opportunities helping build a more sustainable development model for the country.

Mr Michalis Hrisochoidis also said that there will be quality checks and the administration of man power will be totally legitimate, in an effort to keep the uninsured man power to zero. He also said that this is a victory against those that bet against the attempts to restart the country's economy and development plans.