Work on Peljesac Bridge going according to schedule, minister Oleg Butkovic says

ZAGREB, 10.01.2019.
Work on the Peljesac Bridge and its access roads is going according to schedule, Minister of Maritime Affairs, Transport and Infrastructure Oleg Butkovic told reporters before a cabinet meeting on Thursday.

"We will build everything as planned," he said, adding that the European Union had approved funding for 85 percent of the cost of the entire project.

Butkovic recalled that the project would be carried out in four stages and that work on the first stage was under way.

Asked why contractors had still not been selected for the construction of access roads, he replied: "They will be, don't worry."

The Vecernji List newspaper said on Thursday that the state-owned road construction and management company Hrvatske Ceste (HC) had still not selected contractors for access roads to the bridge even though a deadline had expired and that the bridge, being built by a Chinese consortium, might be finished before the access roads.

The contract for the construction of a bridge between the mainland and the southern Peljesac peninsula with access roads was signed on 23 April 2018 between HC and the China Road and Bridge Corporation. The project is worth HRK 2.08 billion (EUR 280 million), exclusive of VAT, and 85 percent of eligible costs will be covered by the EU. The total length of the access roads is 30 kilometres.

The bridge will ensure a direct road link between the southernmost part of Croatia and the rest of the country which is currently cut off at Neum where Bosnia and Herzegovina has access to the Adriatic Sea.