The FINANCIAL — The EBRD is continuing to support improvements to public transport systems in Romania with a loan of up to €20.4 million to the city of Arad to finance the acquisition of new energy efficient trams. Located in western Romania, Arad is a significant commercial centre and an important trade route between the western part of the country and western Europe.
The city’s public transport is provided by trams and buses, which carry the majority of passenger traffic in the city and surrounding areas. Most of the services are operated by Arad Public Transport Company, which is owned by the municipality.
The EBRD financing will support the city’s wider objective of restructuring the public transport system and improving its efficiency, as well as reducing traffic congestion and air pollution in Arad.
The proceeds of the loan will be used to acquire up to five modern energy-efficient trams and to modernise the main depot infrastructure. In addition, the project includes the introduction of an e-ticketing system for public transport in Arad, with the support of grant financing from the EBRD’s Shareholder Special Fund. According to the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, the project implementation will also promote private sector participation by outsourcing the operations of the regional bus services to the private sector.
“The EBRD is pleased to continue its successful cooperation with the Arad municipality in order to improve the standards of public transport in the city. This new financing will bring considerable benefits to the residents of Arad and will help improve the operational efficiency of Arad Public Transport Company,” said Jean-Patrick Marquet, EBRD Director for Municipal and Environmental Infrastructure.
“The loan agreement signed today is very important for further development in the city of Arad. It will enable us to continue our efforts to modernise the public transport system in Arad and will bring higher quality services to our residents. We are delighted to benefit from the support of such a reliable partner as the EBRD,” said Gheorghe Falca, Mayor of Arad city.
Previously the EBRD provided €33 million to the city of Arad to finance the rehabilitation of tram infrastructure and modernise the streets along the main north-south axis. Since the beginning of its operations in Romania, the EBRD has invested over €5.7 billion in various sectors of the country’s economy.