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Balkan States To Work On Transport Corridor

(RFE/RL) March 8, 2006 -- The transport ministers of Albania, Bulgaria, Macedonia, and Italy today agreed to accelerate work on a project to build a transport corridor that would connect the Balkans with Western Europe and the Middle East.

The four ministers -- Albania's Lulzim Basha, Bulgaria's Petar Mutafchiev, Macedonia's Xhemali Mehazi, and Italy's Pietro Lunardi -- agreed in the Bulgarian city of Plovdiv to fill in the existing gaps in a potential 1,300-kilometer network of highways, railways, and ports.

The project, which also includes Greece and Turkey, was launched in 1991 but a lack of funding has resulted in little progress being made.