ISPA FINANCES TWO NEW PURIFYING STATIONS
Despite a delay, the project for construction of waste water purifying stations in the towns of Stara Zagora and Dimitrovgrad is about to end successfully. On November 24, the Minister of Regional Development Valentin Tserovsky and the Head of the European Commission Delegation to Bulgaria Dimitris Kourkoulas signed the agreements for construction of the two installations. The agreements stipulate that, following six-month designing and two-year construction works, the stations will be linked to the towns' sewerage systems. The documents also guarantee two years of exploitation and maintenance.The building of the station in Stara Zagora will cost EUR10.9MN, while the project in Dimitrovgrad will be worth EUR6.8MN. Part of the funds representing 75% of the investment value of the sites are provided by the ISPA program, while 15% comes as a credit from the European Investment Bank. The remaining 10% is paid by the state budget.A consortium between the German Heitkamp and the Turkish MASS is carrying out the construction works. The two companies were selected in an international competition among twelve other candidates. The construction of the purifying stations is expected to begin next June and finish in 2007.The implementation of the project will be supervised by a consortium between Dahlem Consulting Engineers (Germany), DIWI Consult (Germany), and Data House (Bulgaria). The contract signed for Stara Zagora is worth EUR1.1MN, and the one for Dimitrovgrad - EUR698,000.The European Commission is going to finance through the ISPA program sixteen more projects for construction of waste water purifying stations with a total budget amounting to EUR200MN. I hope that we shall sign financial memoranda for at least two projects by the end of 2004 and for seven more in 2005, Dimitris Kourkoulas said.The first tender for construction of purifying stations in Stara Zagora and Dimitrovgrad was cancelled on July 10, 2003 on the insistence of the European Commission (EC) Delegation. The commissioners found out that the principle of confidentiality had been violated during the assessment of the offers. Then the ministry experts needed five months in order to update the tender files. On January 13, 2004, the EC approved the files and fifteen days later an international tender was opened for constructors of the stations.