A total of EUR 5.6 bln EU funds is waiting to be spent on infrastructure projects in the 2007-2013 period. While in Bulgaria, the attraction rate was 7 per cent – EUR 114 M, before the end of 2010, Romania had attracted just 1 per cent of the EU funds available for the transport sector – EUR 47 M, according to data presented yesterday by Klynveld Peat Marwick Goerdeler (KPMG) specializing in auditing and consulting services in EU Funds in Central and Eastern Europe – Progress report 2007-2010. However, Romania has a total of EUR 5.6 bln available in the 2007-2013 period, and Bulgaria just EUR 1.8 bln.
‘The almost EUR 150 M paid in total by Brussels to Romania and Bulgaria for European infrastructure projects to date represent just the value of the design services and associated studies for the major infrastructure projects in the two countries’, Dragos Paslaru, general manager of GEA Strategy & Consulting explained to Ziarul Financiar. He added that, if the contracts for which the Ministry of Transport is organising tendering procedures this year are implemented, the absorption rate will grow to 40 – 50 per cent. Although its absorption rate grew to 2.6 per cent in the first months of the year, the Operational Programme for the Transport Sector is still the programme with the lowest fund attraction rate of all seven programmes under which Romania attracts European funds, KPMG report also says.
On the other hand, Bulgaria, whose available infrastructure budget is EUR 2 bln in 2007-2013, by the end f 2010 had already paid out EUR 114 M accounting for an absorption rate of 6 per cent. Between 2007 and 2010, Bulgaria signed infrastructure development contacts worth approximately EUR 600 M. Bulgaria is better placed than Romania both in terms of absorption and from the point of view of payments made, which are 2.5 times bigger than Romania’s. Bulgaria benefits from one third of Romania’s funds available for infrastructure.