Serbia plans major investments in rail infrastructure
The Government of Serbia intends to invest over 3.5 billion euros in the modernisation of rail infrastructure. Around 1.4 billion euros of the amount will be allocated for the construction of the metro system in the capital city of Belgrade. These infrastructure investments are the part of the Government’s strategy ‘Serbia 2025’.
Three main railway projects will be funded within the declared five-year strategy. 1.37 billion euros will be invested in the construction of Belgrade Metro. Two other projects are worth 1.5 billion euros. They are dealt with the Pan-European transport corridor X that connects Austria and Hungary to Greece and crosses Serbia from north to south. Inter alia, 800 million euros will be allocated for upgrading the Novi Sad – Subotica railway and 700 million euros for the Belgrade – Niš line. The Government plans to continue the modernisation of the Serbian section of the Belgrade – Bar railway. Moreover, the Niš – Dimitrovgrad railway that connects Serbia and Bulgaria will be also improved.
Support from China and Russia
Serbia is modernising its rail infrastructure with the help of China and Russia. Last year, the Government signed several deals with both states. Thus, the Export-Import Bank of China will fund 943 million euros for the modernisation of the Novi Sad – Subotica railway. The civil works on this section will be performed by the Chinese companies China Railway International and China Communications Construction Company. They will launch the project in March of this year. Also, China Road and Bridge Corporation (CRBC) will upgrade the Belgrade – Niš – Preševo line.
RZD International, a subsidiary of Russian Railways, has already upgraded the Belgrade – Pančevo railway in 2014-2016. It also reconstructed 14 railway stations and six stops along the Pan-European corridor X. As of today, the Russian contractor is being carried out the construction of the second track on the Stara Pazova – Novi Sad line and the renovation of this route. It is worth to note that RZD International supplied to Serbia 39 two-car railbuses of RA-2 type (ŽS 711 type). They were produced by Transmashholding in 2011-2016.