The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) supports Montenegro’s efforts to modernize its rail network by providing financing for the purchase of modern rail maintenance equipment.
The bank provides a €11 million loan to Željeznička Infrastruktura Crne Gore, a state-owned company responsible for railway infrastructure. The company will use the proceeds to invest in much-needed equipment to maintain infrastructure and replace obsolete and energy-inefficient machines that have been in use for over 50 years. The new equipment will help increase the safety and reliability of Montenegrin railways, while reducing the railway company’s maintenance and operating costs.
In addition, the EBRD will support the company to improve its corporate governance and develop partnerships with vocational training schools to attract more young workers to the rail sector.
Remon Zakaria, EBRD Head of Montenegro, said: “Rebuilding rail links and making rail transport safer and more efficient is one of our priorities, both in the country and in the wider Western Balkans region. The EBRD supports Montenegro’s efforts to reform and invest in the railway sector and we are pleased to bring our cooperation to this important project.”
Marina Bošković, Executive Director of Željeznička Infrastruktura Crne Gore, expressed her satisfaction that the company signed a loan agreement with the EBRD, allowing the company to supply modern machinery for railway maintenance after decades of delay.
“Modern line maintenance machines will be provided to Montenegro’s railway infrastructure by 2025,” said Bošković. “This will improve the quality of infrastructure maintenance and also take the work of Željeznička Infrastruktura Crne Gore to a higher level. All this will also contribute to the recovery and general development of the Montenegrin economy.”
The main railway line of the country, which connects the port of Bar on the Adriatic coast with Belgrade, the capital of Serbia, and passes through the capital of Montenegro, Podgorica, is 167 km long. In addition, Podgorica is connected to Nikšić by a 57 km rail link and a 25 km link to the Albanian border.
The EBRD supports Montenegro in reforming the railway sector and improving its infrastructure and has so far granted €40 million in loans for the railway sector.
The EBRD has invested more than €2006 million in Montenegro since 711, focusing primarily on enhancing private sector competitiveness, deepening Montenegro’s transition to a green economy, and promoting greater connectivity and regional integration, railly news report.