Regional Broadband Infrastructure Development

Orient/East-Med Corridor: North Macedonia – Albania CVIII Road Interconnection, Bukojcani – Kicevo Subsection

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Project Financing

EBRD Loan € 79,200,000
National contribution Own Contribution € 6,000,000
WBIF Grant WB-IG03-MKD-TRA-03 € 19,850,000
Total € 105,050,000
Total Grants € 19,850,000
Total Loans € 79,200,000

Project Description

This investment project will build a 12.9 km-long motorway on a section of the Orient/East-Med Core Network (Corridor VIII) in North Macedonia, between the village of Bukojčani and the town of Kičevo. This subsection is part of a larger, 42 km motorway planned between Gostivar and Kičevo. The two towns are now connected by a road which was built almost 40 years ago and which has undergone little rehabilitation in recent years. It consists of a single carriageway with two two-way lanes and goes through both flat and mountainous terrain of up to 1,200 meters. The travel speed is limited to 40-70 km/h on most of the route and the road cannot safely meet existing and future traffic demand.

The new motorway will be built on a new alignment, which would allow for travel speeds of 100-120 km/h, as well as limit the traffic impact on the rural settlements and on the environment along the current route.

Corridor VIII connects Tirana, Durrës, and Vlorë in Albania to Skopje in North Macedonia, and then both countries to Bulgaria, via the border crossing point in Deve Bair. The Gostivar – Kičevo segment is one of the key sections, located on the route to Albania. Construction is planned to take place in three phases: Bukojčani – Kičevo, Gostivar – Gorna Gjonovica, and Gorna Gjonovica – Bukojčani. 

This investment project covers the first phase, which is now at the detailed design stage. It is supported by a €19.85 million EU grant under the 2018 Connectivity Agenda through the WBIF. 

Once completed, the new road from Gostivar to Kičevo will connect to the existing motorway to Skopje (55 km) as well as to the highway that is being built to Ohrid (58 km).

Results and Benefits

  • 12.9 km-long motorway section, built according to modern safety standards;
  • Substantial decrease in travel time between Kičevo and Gostivar, with a direct reduction of travel times to and from Tirana;
  • Reduction in accident rate and vehicle operating costs for more than 520,000 people working and/or living along the Gostivar to Kičevo route;
  • More than 280 jobs created during construction as well as operation and maintenance periods;
  • Improved trade flows with countries in the region and thus a positive impact on the broader economy of North Macedonia.
  • Countries: North Macedonia
  • Code: PRJ-MKD-TRA-015
  • Sector: Transport
  • Monitor IFI: EBRD
  • Status: Preparation
  • Beneficiary: Public Enterprise for State Roads
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