Home World The 62-mile mega-motorway in Europe that ended up costing £19 million a...

The 62-mile mega-motorway in Europe that ended up costing £19 million a mile

This 62-mile European road could be a highway to hell for accountants as it has tripled in cost from £366 million to more than £1.3 billion. The Moravian Corridor in Serbia connects two other roads in the country, the Belgrade-Nis highway and the Milos Veliki, and has been trumpeted as being good for jobs and tourism.

Last year leaders in the Balkan country signed a deal with China for firms from the Far East nation to construction more than 186 miles of roads in a four billion euro agreement.

But Serbian newspaper Nova reports highway construction has become a political tool for Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic to use for elections.

The news site says citizens often face a bill for the roads that is “hundreds of millions of euros higher than the initial value”.

It adds: “The most drastic example is probably the construction of the Moravian Corridor, whose price “jumped” from 430 million to an incredible 1,6 billion euros.

“The map of Serbia interwoven with existing and non-existing highways and expressways is the favourite prop that President Aleksandar Vucic moves from one television studio to another.”

In an editorial for Macedonian newspaper Sloboden Pečat, the publication noted: “In Serbia, it is not unusual for the cost of building the highway, which Aleksandar Vucic uses as a trump card in the election campaigns, to double, triple, or even quadruple in a very short period of time.”

As well as Chinese interest in the region, Britain has also announced an interested investing in Serbia and the Balkans as a whole.

According to the Sarajevo Times, at the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development’s Western Balkans Investment Summit in London last month Security Minister Tom Tugendhat said their were potential business opportunities.

The value of trade between the UK and the Western Balkans region was reportedly £4.5 billion in 2023 and growing.


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