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The Montenegro railways receive a state loan from the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development

The Montenegro railways receive a state loan from the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development
photo: Archives/Railway
13 / 10 / 2021

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) will grant the company Železnice Čiernej hory (ŽPCG) a state loan for the purchase of two new electric passenger trains. The Bank finances the entire project with EUR 14 million and the State of Montenegro is responsible for the loan. In 2018, the Ministry of Transport and Maritime Affairs launched a project of EUR 13 million for the purchase of new EMUs.

In the meantime, the new trains will be replaced by older 50-year-old models, which are still in operation. The project should support the adoption of the Passenger Safety and Rights Act, which was drawn up between the EU-supported Transport Community and the Western Balkans under the so-called 'Passenger Safety and Rights Act'. Action plan for railways, which is intended, inter alia, to find problems and consequently improve corporate governance. The project will also continue to contribute to laying the foundations for a five-year public service contract that will be a landmark between government and society in line with best international practices.

The project should ensure not only support for the modernization of passenger fleets but also through the delivery of new safe models, contribute to improving the quality of services, safety and ultimately to the growth of rail passenger transport in the country. Thanks to new modern trains, the country's carbon emissions will also be reduced, thus reducing operating costs and increasing fare revenues. This leads to an increase in the financial sustainability of the railway operator.

The state-of-the-art trains operated in Montenegro are part of a contract signed in 2011 between ŽPCG and CAF for the design, production, and delivery of 3 three-car regional Civity trains with a capacity of 165 seated passengers, which provide transport services on the northwest line leading from Podgorica to Nikšič, which is already reconstructed and electrified to 25 kV.

Civity trains have an aerodynamic design, are low-floor, and have a lower weight thanks to common chassis. It also offers maximum user comfort and, in addition, they are made of recyclable, environmentally friendly materials.

In 2018, the company presented its plans to modernize and rebuild its fleet, a project estimated at EUR 10 million for which an agreement with Eurofima was signed. The program included the overhaul of 461 electric locomotives.