Corridor Vc is a pan-European motorway, railway, and waterway project.
The BiH motorway section will follow a route of roughly 300 kilometres from Bosanski Brod/Bosanski Samac via Doboj, Zenica, Sarajevo, and Mostar, to the Croatian border. After the border it will proceed to Ploce.
The railway route will follow a similar northeast-southwest trajectory, from Strizivojna-Vrpolje in Croatia, and the road-rail network will be connected to the Sava River at Samac, Bosanski/ Slavonski Brod and Brčko.
Corridor Vc will join Bosnia and Herzegovina to one of the main intercontinental trade routes, and
• make it easier to export goods from this country to other parts of the world;
• make it possible to develop better links between economic clusters and companies, particularly in terms of tourism, agriculture and industrial regions;
• facilitate social and cultural interaction; and
• help to boost local economies along the route.
Initially, through construction work, the project will have a positive impact on job creation. Long-term maintenance and operational requirements will also sustain employment.
However, the project is not a magical elixir that will automatically transform the BiH economy.
It can help to bring about an economic transformation.
But this will only happen if the authorities take the necessary steps to ensure that the project is properly exploited for long-term benefits.
In terms of boosting exports, Corridor Vc will only have the desired effect if related initiatives aimed at increasing the competitiveness of BiH products are put into effect – and this includes establishing efficient certification agencies that will make it possible for BiH producers to take their goods to the European and international market.
It will only boost tourism and agriculture if related initiatives are implemented to standardise legislation across the country and begin coordinated and coherent international marketing.
To achieve the desired impact in local economies a process of consultation must be developed so that communities all along the 300-kilometre route can propose plans that will allow them to exploit the opportunities that Corridor Vc will offer.
One reason that the infrastructure along the existing Corridor Vc route has been able to cope with demand until now is that demand itself has been modest since the war. Corridor Vc will help the BiH economy grow, and, at the same time, it will allow the transport network to cope with this increased growth. It represents, therefore, a virtuous cycle.
Getting this virtuous cycle up and running has been made more difficult since the BiH authorities have not endorsed an overall transport strategy. Because of this, planning and implementation of Vc projects has been inconsistent and patchy.
The BiH Ministry for Communications and Transport coordinates efforts related to Corridor Vc. The Entity ministries responsible for transport and spatial planning approve final designs, and raise and allocate funds. The Entities fund expropriation costs, while permits are issued by the cantons (FBiH) and/or the municipalities.
A total of 500 million Euros has been provided for Corridor Vc through EBRD-EIB loans with an EU contribution of 5.27 million Euros to subsidize the EIB interest rate (NB: 2.5 million Euros of this sum was lost due to delays in the construction of the Sarajevo bypass). Around 180 million Euros of the total 500 million Euros is under implementation.
The European Union is committed to helping the BiH authorities in their efforts to attract funding for Corridor Vc.
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