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Pursuing development beyond frontiers
The OFID co-funded Hrenovica-Goražde expressway and Hranjen Tunnel project in BiH is vitally important for the country
Tunnels are vital for navigating Bosnia and Herzegovina's mountainous terrain.
The Hrenovica-Goražde expressway and Hranjen Tunnel project in Bosnia and Herzegovina, co-financed by OFID, is an important step toward the modernization of the country’s transport infrastructure. The project will also help improve connections across Europe. The project will also help improve connections across Europe.
Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) is an upper middle-income country that has accomplished much since the mid-1990s. Despite this, the mostly mountainous country of 3.5 million people remains one of Europe’s least developed economies. As it embarks on a new growth model underpinned by, among other fundamentals, improved infrastructure, the country remains a potential candidate for membership of the European Union (EU).
To date, less than half of BiH’s total road network (estimated at 22,600 km) is paved; a statistic that helps explain the government’s identification of the transport sector as a top priority. With this in mind, a 2015-2030 Framework Transport Policy aims to upgrade transport infrastructure to support regional and international trade and, more generally, to facilitate the more efficient and safer movement of citizens.
The Hrenovica-Goražde expressway and Hranjen Tunnel project plays a central role in this framework that aims, among other things, to facilitate integration with the EU. The project will link the city of Goražde with Route 3 of the Trans-European Road Network, and with the motorway in Corridor Vc. The project will enhance road links in the east with the rest of the country, as well as with the Western Balkan region, and should benefit around 900,000 people.
Managed by JP Autoceste FBiH – the national public motorways company led by former BiH Prime Minister Adnan Terzi – the project’s Europe-wide value is clear: “It is crucial not only for BiH, but it is also significant for the European transport network,’’ Terzi told the OFID Quarterly on a recent visit to the organization’s Vienna headquarters.
“Infrastructure is the basis for any further development” Terzi continued. “It creates the conditions for the expedient and cheaper transport of goods. It also creates added value. We have clear indicators that show one person working on the construction in BiH generates additional employment for four people in terms of production, planning and supporting activities. It will directly impact our economy.’’
The project is located in BiH’s smallest canton and will include the construction of a major tunnel and expressway, with bridges and interchanges, and will traverse valleys, rivers and villages.