The Slovenia Times

Businesses Sceptical about Private Interest in Koper Rail



The government will not be able to find a partner, Čedomir Bojanić of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GZS) told the press in Ljubljana on Tuesday, a day after the government decided to vie for EU funds for the EUR 1.35bn project with a public-private partnership scheme.

Moreover, Rok Svetek of logistics company Adria Kombi said private partners were usually not interested in such projects because they wanted to see a return on investment in a certain period, while such infrastructure projects yield return over extended periods.

The business representatives however reiterated that Slovenia needed a second track linking its only sea port to the hinterland soon. "If the link is not built as soon as possible, we won't need it in 2030," said Svetek.

Transport of merchandise through the port of Koper increased by 42.5% between 2004 and 2013, Igor Sep of the GZS transport section said, quoting data from the Statistics Office. Meanwhile, OECD projections show that international cargo transport will increase four-fold by 2050, he added.

A number of sectors and companies depend on port operator Luka Koper, including hauliers, storage facilities and other providers of related services, which employ more than 20,000 people and generate EUR 3bn in annual revenue, according to Sep.

The warnings from the business sector came a day after the cabinet decided to bid for EU funds to help finance the 27km track valued at EUR 1.35bn as part of a plan to build it in public-private partnership. The country aims to get some EUR 380m from Connecting Europe Facility (CEF), according to media reports.

The bid, which is due on 26 February, must contain an investment plan, however Slovenia decided only last night that it would try to secure the missing funds through a private-public partnership, with PM Miro Cerar stressing the project would definitely not be funded by taxpayers.


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