A new epoch has begun for our municipality. The highway, Free Zone, railway line and future gas pipeline route are our greatest advantages compared to other municipalities of our region. We hope that this enormous state investment in infrastructure will reduce unemployment significantly.
Corridor 10 is expected to be a lifeline for Dimitrovgrad. What will this roadway bring you, given that you’re a border municipality?
– Corridor 10’s construction is the largest single investment in the country in the past decade, and that in itself testifies to its significance and expected positive effects for the Serbian economy. When it comes to our municipality, paradoxically, we were at one point more interested in the construction of the motorway taking as long as possible, as a significant number of our citizens were involved in the construction of the motorway, tunnels, bridges, access roads, as well as the fact that significant funds were paid to citizens in compensation for the expropriation of land along the highway’s route.
Today, following the construction of a warehouse around Dimitrovgrad and the near completion of the entire route from Niš to the border with Bulgaria, we expect Dimitrovgrad to be more accessible to the rest of the country, and – following completion of the section from the border to Sofia – we’ll also become closer to Sofia, which, under conditions of the free flow of people, goods and capital, has great significance to Dimitrovgrad’s further economic development.
Increasing economic cooperation between our country and Bulgaria, the greater flow of people and goods through the built corridor, is also a great development opportunity for Dimitrovgrad
Will the new highway, free zone, railway line and future gas pipeline route revitalise the municipality?
– All of that is our advantage over other municipalities of our region, which are currently at the same level of development but are not on the route of the corridor. Dimitrovgrad can’t significantly reduce unemployment from the privatisation of large social enterprises, like most municipalities in southern Serbia, and this huge infrastructure investment, which increases the attractiveness of our location, contributes to finally improving this situation.
It is up to us to use this positive circumstance by understanding the needs of both domestic business and foreign investors and to realise the advantages given to us as soon as possible. Plots sold in the Beleš Work Zone and the launch of the construction of manufacturing plants are ample evidence that things are heading in the right direction.
It was over a year ago that the leadership of our country and Bulgaria discussed major joint infrastructure projects, improving cooperation in rail transport and reaching foreign trade exchange of 3.5 billion euros. Has the realisation of these jobs since started?
– Bulgaria is also constructing the Corridor 10 highway from Sofia towards Dimitrovgrad, without which investment from this side of the border makes little sense. As for our municipality, economic cooperation exists in several directions. A certain number of Dimitrovgrad residents work in Bulgaria and travel daily to Dragoman, Kostinbrod and Sofia, while another type of real economic cooperation is greenfield investments from Bulgaria in our Beleš Work Zone.
We have signed contracts with two companies that purchased land and production facilities are under construction. The only official, more significant foreign trade exchange is that of a textile company which until a year ago sold its entire production in Bulgaria.