CHISINAU (Moldova), October 6 (SeeNews) - The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) said on Wednesday it is providing Moldova’s national railway operator Calea Ferata din Moldova with an additional 23.5 million euro ($27.1 million) loan to upgrade key infrastructure.
The new loan follows a joint 110 million euro financial package by the EBRD, European Investment Bank (EIB) and European Union (EU), agreed in 2014 and disbursed in 2017, to upgrade railway infrastructure, acquire new rolling stock and support the reform process of the state-owned enterprise., the EBRD said in a press release.
The Moldovan government requested the new financing in order to continue the infrastructure upgrade.
"The funds will be allocated for the modernisation of the railway infrastructure on the Bender-Causeni-Basarabeasca-Etulia-Giurgiulesti section, this being the busiest railway segment in the country, as it ensures the transit of goods from and to Romania and Ukraine," Moldovan minister of infrastructure and regional development Andrei Spinu said.
To date, 12 new locomotives have been purchased with EU support and are currently in operation. There has been a feasibility study on infrastructure rehabilitation and the works on the railway section Bender-Causeni-Basarabeasca-Etulia-Giurgiulesti will soon begin. In addition, Calea Ferata din Moldova is preparing to launch a tender for an energy-management information system (EMIS), for more efficient, cost-saving energy planning and monitoring.
"Modern railways mean safer, more efficient transport for passengers and freight. Our financing will improve the operational efficiency and corporate governance at Calea Ferata din Moldova while delivering important benefits for trade, the economy and for people’s lives in Moldov," EBRD managing director for the Eastern Europe and the Caucasus Matteo Patrone said.