PRISTINA, Kosovo —The confidential contract between the Kosovo Government and the American-Turkish consortium of the construction enterprises Bechtel and Enka was made public by Kosovo’s oppositional Movement for Self-Determination ‘Vetevendosje’. As to Kosovo media, leading officials of ‘Vetevendosje’ claimed that in contrary to government announcements of 700 million euro costs for the highway, the contract doesn’t specify a final amount. Vetevendosje member Shpend Ahmeti stated that according to the contract the Government of Kosovo carries all risks.
According to Ahmeti, with this contract the government of Kosovo agreed to be charged financially significantly higher, regarding basics construction materials, as compared to market prices: To illustrate this, Ahmeti in particular highlighted the foreseen contract prices for sand, which with 23 Euro per cubic meter (m3) exceed the Kosovo market price by about 100 percent. The contracted price for concrete, with 180 Euro is said to be even 140 percent above the according market price.
Meanwhile the Kosovo Minister of Infrastructure, Fehmi Mujota, reacted on the ‘Vetevendosje’ claims by stating, the project would be going very well. “We call on Vetevendosje to cooperate and not to damage this major project”, Mujota was quoted as saying on a press conference – whereas broadcasting media reported to have been instructed not to address any questions to the minister. At the same time Kosovo’s Minister of Finance raised doubt’s concerning the authenticity of the presented document.
The Kosovo motorway project aims at facilitating the traffic from Kosovo to Albania. The former Kosovo transport minister Limaj, who signed the contract, is under prosecution by EULEX in regard of corruption since a year. However, the EU rule-of-law mission in Kosovo was not able until now to present further evidence on this case. KON / NK