The EU is to invest €4bn on 25 large infrastructure projects across ten of its Member States
The EU Cohesion Policy investment package adopted by the Commission includes Bulgaria, Czechia, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Malta, Poland, Portugal and Romania.
The infrastructure projects cover a wide range of areas: health, transport, research, environment and energy. With national co-financing, the total investment in these projects amounts to €8bn.
Affordable energy in Bulgaria
€33m of EU funds will finance the construction of a 182-km cross-border gas interconnector between Komotini, Greece, and Stara Zagora, Bulgaria. The pipeline is a European Project of Common Interest, contributing to the objectives of the EU.
The two countries’ gas systems will be linked for the first time, diversifying energy sources in the region and increasing energy security. With more competition in the gas market, consumers will enjoy lower prices.
Road and rail connections in Czechia
€76m is financing upgrades on the rail corridor between Prague and Pilsen. Works include new or reconstructed tracks between Rokycany and Pilsen, shortening travel time by half on this section and reinforcing the attractiveness of Pilsen as a regional economic centre.
Almost €75m will also be invested in a road from Nebory to Bystřice, as part of a major link between the Czech D48 motorway and the Slovak D3 motorway.
Research campus in Jena
In Jena, Germany, the Friedrich-Schiller-University’s facilities will be given a makeover with almost €84m of EU funds. The project will finance the construction of two buildings: the university data centre and the faculty of mathematics and IT science, benefitting 18,000 students.
Efficient public services in Greece
Almost €135m is invested in the “Syzefxis II” telecom system, which will eventually unify the entire Greek public administration network. An additional 600,000 civil servants and 34,000 premises will be connected to the system, resulting in important economies of scale and better services to the population.
Some €95m will also fund the construction of an electrical interconnection between the island of Crete and the Peloponnese peninsula. It includes two 135-km submarine power cables. This project will lower the costs of electricity in Crete, by replacing expensive oil-fired generation units with electricity from mainland Greece.
Improved connectivity in Budapest
€105.5m will finance upgrades on the southern section of the Budapest ring road, with reconstructed roads, bridges and new cycle paths. This project will shorten travel time and improve road safety for the 90,000 vehicles circulating daily in the area. In addition, it will reduce congestion by diverting traffic away from the city centre.
Better rail transport in Sicily
More than €358m of EU funds will help extend the Circumetnea railway line operating in Catania, Sicily, with eight new stations and rolling stocks. This project will help reduce congestion on the road network and will promote clean mobility in the region.
Better drinking water in Malta
Almost €74m will provide Malta, Gozo and Comino islands with better drinking water, enhanced security of water supply and improved groundwater resource management. The project will benefit the entire population of the country. EU-funded works include an underground tunnel and the extension of water and wastewater distribution networks.
Improved healthcare in Poland
In the field of healthcare, almost €61m of EU funds will help purchase new equipment for the University Hospital of Kraków, Małopolskie, benefitting over 3.3 million inhabitants.
Then, €56m will help build a new hospital complex for the Regional Centre of Children Health in Poznań, Wielkopolskie, centralising healthcare services, extending facilities and buying new equipment. The centre will be equipped with an emergency care department for children and will enlarge its orthopaedics, traumatology and rehabilitation departments.
In the field of maritime transports, €155m will increase the safety of operations in the Port of Gdańsk, Pomorskie, with upgraded breakwater structures. Almost €65m will help build or modernise quays and hydro-technical engineering structures in the Port of Gdynia, increasing traffic safety.
In rail transport, €126m will help build the Szczecin Metropolitan Railway, connecting the main cities of Western Pomerania including Stargard, Police and Gryfino and benefitting 687,000 inhabitants. Almost €39m will help purchase 16 electric train units, which will operate in the Warsaw agglomeration. Some €58m will help modernise 152 passenger carriages and purchase 20 electric locomotives, which will circulate on the routes operated by PKP Intercity in the country.
Lastly, in road transport, Cohesion Policy will finance the construction of a section of the S7 express road linking Warsaw to Grójec (€129m), a section of the A2 motorway between Warsaw’s southern bypass and Mińsk Mazowiecki (more than €78m), a section of the S3 express road towards the Czech border in Lower Silesia (€105m) and a section of the Olsztyn bypass in Warmińsko-Mazurskie (€87m).
A modernised Northern railway line in Portugal
The Ovar-Gaia section on the Northern railway line, part of the Trans-European Transport Network, will be modernised with almost €119m of EU funds. Passengers will enjoy shorter travel time, more comfortable conditions and increased safety on this axis.
Transport in Bucharest and water management in Romania
€1bin will help upgrade Bucharest’s ring road by expanding several of its sections, doubling the lanes in each direction. It will also support the construction of a 51-km section of the southern part of the new Bucharest Orbital Motorway. Still in the Romanian capital, €97m of EU funds will finance works on the entire metro line 2, with new tracks and rolling stocks.
Almost €603m will support the protection and rehabilitation of the highly touristic area of the Black Sea coastline in the Constanța County. The project includes cliff consolidation works, replenishment of sand on the beaches, biodiversity preservation measures (artificial reefs and repopulation of marine species) as well as monitoring equipment.
The EU will also invest more than €135m in better drinking water and wastewater systems in the Timiș County. An additional 15,000 inhabitants will be connected to the drinking water network and almost 380,000 people will enjoy better drinking water.