The National Liberal Party (PNL) claims there is a letter that European Commissioner for Regional Development, Corina Cretu, has sent to PM Viorica Dancila, Transports minister Lucian Sova and European Funds minister Rovana Plumb on April 25, voicing concert over the risk of EU funds disengagement.
„I am addressing to you in regards to the current situation of the transports investments, as part of the Large Infrastructure Operational Programme for 2014-2020. Considering that we are approaching the half of the scheduling period and that it’s a time when the Comissions starts preparations for the next period of programmes, I am extremely concerned over the planification and implementation of the transport infrastructure programmes which are co-funded by the Cohesion Fund and the Regional Development Fund in Romania (…) In this regard, the Romanian authorities will have to pay special attention to the budgetary exercises for the next stage , while the new projects risk being in the starting procedure without generating the necessary expenses,” the European Commissioner says.
Corina Cretu warned that until now only four new major projects for the railway sector had bee filed for 2014-2018, also voicing concern over the early stage of the projects.
„The preparation and presentation of new projects for the current period has been delayed very much. So far only four new major railway projects have been filed in four years: the railway line Radna-Gurasada-Simeria (EUR 1,306 million from the Cohesion Fund, approved, Sebeş-Turda highway phase II (EUR 272 M from FEDER, approved), Câmpia Turzii-Ogra-Târgu-Mureş highway (EUR 247 M from the Cohesion Fund, under evaluation) and the Bucharest metro line 6 (EUR 657 M, from the Cohesion Fund, under evaluation),” Cretu said.
According to the EU Commissioner, the Romanian authorities have recently announced a list of major transport projects to be submitted to the Commission this year: the Bridge over Danube in Braila, Brasov-Pitesti national road 73, phase II, Sibiu –Pitesti highway, sections 1 and 5 and eventually, Craiova-Pitesti project, Transilvania motorway and the Bacau ring road. „I hail there are new projects ongoing, but at the same time I express my concern over their delayed procedures,” the letter also reads.
Commissioner Cretu argues that due to this situation our country risks „immediate disengagements”.
PNL has subsequently called for the immediate dismissal of PM Dancila and of the two ministers, Lucian Sova and Rovana Plumb.