Prime Minister Boiko Borissov and other senior officials attended a ceremony on August 16 to inaugurate construction of a 16km stretch of the Hemus Motorway, which when completed will link capital city Sofia to Varna on the Black Sea.
Borissov said that the stretch on which work started today, between Buhovtsi and Belokopitovo, would be completed in “a year and two to three months”.
The construction of the 16km is being funded entirely from Bulgaria’s national budget.
Borissov said that the previous government had removed Hemus Motorway from the Operational Programme, meaning that the project could not be funded with EU money. “All this is coming from the taxpayer’s pocket. So, when they (the opposition) state some great desire for early elections, these regions know what they have done to them, as well as all taxpayers,” he said.
In May 2018, Bulgaria’s Regional Development Minister Nikolai Nankov said that Hemus Motorway would be completed “by the beginning of 2024”.
“On the basis of the completed procedures, we have managed to shorten the period for completion and the construction will end a year earlier than the deadline set last year,” Nankov said at the time.
By the end of 2021, 160 km of motorway will be completed, he said.
Nankov said that the construction of a new 9.3 km had already started at the section between Yablanitsa and the Boaz road junction, part of the 420km long motorway, of which 170km are in operation.
The indicative deadline for the completion of this section is two years, but we have the assurance of the constructors and the Road Infrastructure Agency that it will be reduced to one year and six to seven months, Nankov said.