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Bulgaria Lyulin Highway Project to Start on June 18 with EU Money

Date: 19.05.2009

The first 5km stretch of the Lyulin highway will be started on 18 June to show the European delegation visiting at the time.

Yanko Yankov, Director of Bulgaria's Road Infrastructure agency, confirmed the news, adding that EUR 30 M has been spent on the project so far from the national budget.

Ivan Atanasov, the chairman of the National Road Infrastructure agency, stated that the construction of the Trakya highway will also be funded by European funding, as it will be included in the operating program Transport.

The European Commission unfroze Tuesday EUR 115 M in aid for the building of the Lyulin highway.

On July 23 2008, the EC had halted intermediate payments from the cohesion fund for the Lyulin Highway and Sofia Beltway and Technical Assistance for Road Planning for European Transportation Corridors (TEN-T) projects, due to lack of control and transparent management at the then Republican Road Infrastructure Fund.

The blockage was preceded by a huge corruption controversy after the Road Infrastructure agency's head Veselin Georgiev was charged with awarding contracts worth tens of millions of BGN to companies run by two of his brothers.

In order to be able to access the money, Bulgaria had to undertake several measures: adopting the Conflict of Interest Act, changing the Public Tenders Act and the Road Act, reorganizing the Road Fund, among others.

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