Koper councillors oppose law on rail expansion project

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Koper – The Koper city council adopted a declaration at an emergency session on Monday opposing the law on the second rail track between the port of Koper and the Divača inland hub. Mayor Boris Popovič stressed the rail expansion was necessary but not the way the government had set out to do it.

Councillors welcomed the initiative to hold a referendum on the law and called on the people to vote the law down.

According to Popovič, the Divača-Koper rail law not only allows corruption risks but enacts them.

Moreover, he said the special purpose vehicle 2TDK that has been set up to manage the project was unnecessary and should also not be co-owned by Slovenia and Hungary.

He further opposes the law putting additional levies on port operator Luka Koper. The operator would need to pay at least EUR 10-19m a year for 45 years, Popovič stressed, adding that this would mean paying at least EUR 5m a year to Hungary.

The mayor said the project should include two new tracks, since he thinks one will no longer suffice by the time it is built. The existing track should be closed down because of fire hazard, he said.

He believes the project could be much cheaper than stipulated by the law. According to Popovič the price tag should be up to EUR 500m and not EUR 3.5-4bn as envisaged in the contested law.

The councillors of the Modern Centre Party (SMC) of Prime Minister Miro Cerar meanwhile boycotted the emergency session, arguing that the council was overstepping its jurisdiction in supporting the referendum.

After his meeting with Cerar in Ljubljana in the afternoon, Popovič told the press he got the impression that the authors of the project had been withholding information from the prime minister.

Although the prime minister told him he trusted his aides and the two remained on opposite sides, Popovič was happy that Cerar at least promised to review his concerns and meet again afterwards.

Cerar already rejected the accusations regarding the project voiced by the opposition during Q&A time in parliament today, stressing that the project had been conducted transparently.

Opposition Democrat (SDS) deputy Ljubo Žnidar stressed that the law clearly paved the way for financial machinations, as 2TDK was given a 45-year concession with no accountability.

The special purpose vehicle had been set up before the law was passed and the government gave it EUR 200m with no clear basic framework, no investment programme and without the necessary paperwork that would allow calculating the price tag.

However, Cerar said the project had the support of international institutions with very high criteria for such projects – the European Commission, the European Investment Bank and the European technical assistance agency Jaspers.

The project, which is designed to pose the lowest possible burden for taxpayers, is also supported by five other countries – four hinterland countries and Spain, the prime minister reiterated.

 

Source : The Slovenia Times

Port of Koper celebrating 60th anniversary

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Koper – The port of Koper is celebrating today its 60th anniversary, as its predecessor, Pristanišče Koper, was established on 23 May 1957. It has since become a major port in the Adriatic and a point of entry for landlocked Central European markets.

Following the establishment in May 1957, the port of Koper welcomed its first ocean-going cargo ship a year and a half later.

It was renamed to Luka Koper in 1961, and the customs zone was established two years later.

In 1967, the construction of the 31-km railway line Koper-Prešnica was finished, enabling the port to get connected to the European railway network.

On the 60th anniversary, an exhibition on the history of the port is on display at the National Assembly in Ljubljana.

The only maritime port in Slovenia has been boosting transshipment and revenue lately, with the Slovenian “window to the world” also becoming an increasingly important port for Central European markets.

Last year, a record transshipment of EUR 22 million tonnes of cargo was recorded, while the Luka Koper group posted a record net profit of EUR 44.38m. Net sales revenues were also record-high, at EUR 200.94m.

The positive trend continues this year, with the group recording EUR 53.3m in net revenues and EUR 13.9m in net profit in the first three months.

The port is entering a key stage of its development, as it is awaiting projects of the railway upgrade between the port and the inland hub of Divača and an extension of its first pier.

 

Source : The Slovenia Times

Enefit project proved too big

 

Source : news.postimees.ee

Transferwise challenges PayPal, launches virtual account service

Source : news.postimees.ee

BH Tennis Player Aldin Setkic progressed 34 Positions

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Aldin Šetkić Tennis Victory oslobodjenje.ba

Bosnian-Herzegovinian tennis player Aldin Šetkic occupies 194th place on the new ATP rank list. Compared to last week’s list, Setkic has advanced 34 positions and has come close to the record career placement, namely on 191th position.

The best Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) tennis player Damir Dzhumhur has fallen back three positions and occupies 96th place, while Mirza Bašić is 165th world player, which is for two positions better than seven days ago.

There is no change at the top of the list and the first is British Andy Murray, in front of the Serb Novak Djokovic and Swiss Stano Wawrinka.
ATP list:

(1) Andy Murray (GB) 10.3702. (2) Novak Djokovic (Srb) 7.4453. (3) Stan Wawrinka (Switz) 5.4454. (4) Rafael Nadal (Spain) 5.3755. (5) Roger Federer (SWE) 5.0356. (6) Miloš Raonić (Can) 4.3607. (7) Dominic Thiem (Aut) 4.1458. (8) Marin Čilić (Cro.) 3.7659. (9) Kei Nishikori (Japan) 3.56010. (17) Alexander Zverev (Him) 3.150 … 96. Damir Džumhur (BiH) 565165. (167) Mirza Bašić (BiH) 345194. (228) Aldin Šetkić (BiH) 275359. (348) Tomislav Brkić (BiH) 129700. (700) Nerman Fatic (BiH)

 

Source : Sarajevo Times

Work to start on terminal for Amsterdam to London train

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A new secure Eurostar terminal is being built on the north side of Amsterdam’s Centraal Station ahead of the start-up of the express rail services to London in mid-December, the Parool reported on Tuesday. The special terminal on the north side of the station adjoining platform 15B is necessary because Britain requires passport and security controls similar to those at airports. Eurostar expects to begin twice-daily return services between Amsterdam and London with stops at Rotterdam and Brussels in mid-December. A stop at Schiphol airport is under consideration but there is a lack of space to build a specialist terminal, the paper said. The journey from Amsterdam to London  will take four hours and nine minutes. A third daily service may be added in 2018. 2.2k Share 21 Share Share Tweet Share

Source :  DutchNews.nl

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