The EU Commissioner for Regional Policy Corina Crețu had sent a letter to the Minister of Transport, Dan Costescu, requesting speeding up the implementation of projects in this area, financed by European structural and investment funds (ESIFs).
“I’m concerned about the slow pace in preparing transport infrastructure projects under Large Infrastructure Operational Programme (LIOP) for 2014- 2020 period, and the large number of projects which may fail to be completed. Although the European Commission has approved 30 of the 123 phasing transport projects for 2007-2013, the national authorities have failed to submit all necessary documents to Brussels. Therefore, there is a risk that Romania can not use European allocated funds and will have to bear the necessary expenses of the national budget to complete the projects,” Crețu said.
She notices that there are significant delays in preparing the financial and technical of a mature project reserve needed to achieve the LIOP targets.
“The lack of major projects and insufficient spending will lead ultimately to disengagement funds highly needed for Romania’s transport network,” EU official said.
The European Commissioner also added that it is necessary the rapid adoption of the General Transport Master Plan (GTMP), as agreed following 2015 negotiations between the European Commission and the Romanian Government.
For LIOP 2014-2020, Romania has about EUR 9.4 billion both through the European Regional Development Fund and the Cohesion Fund.