27 August 2010
The Western Balkans has been handed a €15m boost to improve infrastructure throughout the region under the extension of a highly successful European Union (EU) funded development project.
In 2008 the EU appointed international consultancy WYG, to implement and manage an initial €15.1m project which established an Infrastructure Preparation Facility (IPF) across the region to support the preparation of crucial investment projects.
This original four-year project will now run until 2014, having been awarded an additional €15m of funding in recognition of the considerable contribution the project has already made to upgrading of transport, environment and energy infrastructures, as well as in the social field.
Keith Cook, WYG’s Director of Programme Management and Policy Advice, said: “The timely extension of this programme, in both investment of time and funding, half way through the original contract, is testament not only to the commitment and confidence of the IPF, but secures even greater benefits and momentum for countries across the Western Balkans.”
The IPF programme to date has over 50 projects in the pipeline and has so far begun preparation of over 20 of them, covering a wide range of vital development prospects across the region, including €46m of secured funding for two projects to design prisons.
WYG is currently contracted on 14 development projects, with an additional one under contract negotiation and set to begin. The consultancy has already successfully completed 19 projects across the Western Balkans.
Keith added: “We continue to consolidate our footprint in the region. The extension to this contract reaffirms our commitment to the region and compliments our decision to establish our WYG Croatia business based in Zagreb and the opening of a new office in the heart of Bosnia’s capital, Sarajevo.”
Caption: Part of Albania’s 400km track in desperate need of renewal and repair. A feasibility study to identify preferred alternatives for investments in track, signalling and structures is just one of the 50 improvement projects throughout the Western Balkans.