Today, as part of the Zemo Osiauri-Chumateteli project, part of the East-West Highway (E60), the construction of the Khashuri bypass road opened by Prime Minister of Georgia Giorgi Gakharia, Chargé d’Affaires a.i. of the EU Delegation to Georgia, Asunción Sanchez Ruiz, the Head of the Regional Representation for the EIB South Caucasus Maciej Czura and the Regional Director for the South Caucasus World Bank Group Sebastian Molineus.
The new Khashuri bypass road will significantly relieve the city of Khashuri from traffic jams. Transit traffic will be fully directed on the new road generating time savings and lower vehicle operating cost for road users, as well as ensuring higher road safety for Khashuri residents and road users.
Head of the Regional Representation for the South Caucasus Maciej Czura commented: “The EIB and the EU are the largest funding providers for the core road transport infrastructure to connect Georgia to the Trans-European Network of Transport. The road section opened today , received EUR 49.5m EIB loanand technical assistance in the framework of the Eastern Partnership Technical Assistance Trust Fund. This is a part of the commitment of EU bank to finance Georgia’s highways that exceeds EUR 1bn to improve interconnectivity of Georgia for the benefit of citizens and economic development of the country”.
Chargé d’Affaires a.i. of the EU Delegation to Georgia, Asunción Sanchez Ruiz noted: “The EU is Georgia’s key partner and main donor and is committed to supporting the development of the country, including in the areas of strategic connectivity and modernization The Khashuri bypass opened today is a concrete example of this cooperation, which is facilitating transport links for businesses, and improving safety and quicker transport times for Georgian citizens.
The Khashuri bypass road is part of Zemo Osiauri-Chumateleti road and after the completion of both sections, the road will reach Rikoti pass tunnel. On this section, the road will bypass Khashuri, Surami and Chumateleti. Under the project, a total of 4-lane cement-concrete road, 21 bridges, 5 tunnels, reinforced concrete underpasses, water pipes and drainage systems will be constructed.
Zemo Osiauri-Chumateleti section is an integral part of the main transit highway of the country and the commissioning of this section will increase the capacity of the highway, the level of traffic safety and reduce the travel time.
About the EU in Georgia:
The European Union and Georgia’s close relationship is based on the EU Georgia Association Agreement including a Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area (DCFTA), which entered into force in July 2016 and strives for political association and economic integration. Through its firm support for Georgia’s territorial integritywithin its internationally recognised borders, its political dialogue, cooperation and assistance programmes, the EU remains committed to supporting a strong, independent and prosperous Georgia. The EU remains the largest donor in Georgia, with over 160 projects active through the country.
The European Investment Bank (EIB) is the European Union's bank. It is the long-term lending institution of the EU and is the only bank owned by and representing the interests of the European Union Member States. It makes long-term finance available for sound investments in order to contribute towards EU policy goals. The EIB works closely with other EU institutions to implement EU policy.
As the largest multilateral borrower and lender by volume, the EIB provides finance and expertise for sound and sustainable investment projects which contribute to furthering EU policy objectives. More than 90% of EIB activity is focused on Europe but it also supports the EU's external and development policies.
The EIB Group has joined forces with the European Union under the Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area (DCFTA) Initiative East Programme aiming to strengthen economic development in the countries which have signed Association Agreements with the EU – namely Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine – by providing financial and technical support targeted at SMEs in these three countries.
The Eastern Partnership Technical Assistance Trust Fund (EPTATF) is a multi-purpose and multi-sector funding instrument for specific technical support in the Eastern Partnership countries. It provides these countries with know-how and resources to improve capacity in project preparation and implementation, which facilitates the mobilisation of financing for EIB-supported investments. The EPTATF provides high added value because better project preparation increases the bankability of projects and improves the development impact of investments in the beneficiary countries.