The FINANCIAL — The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) is providing a €9.6 million loan for the development of a new liquid-cargo terminal in Ploče, the second-largest cargo seaport in Croatia and the southern terminus of the Pan-European Corridor Vc.
The new terminal will increase liquid cargo storage capacity by an additional 50,000m3 to 85,000m3 to meet the rising demand for storage capacity from regional oil companies. Construction work is expected to be completed by the end of June 2016, according to EBRD.
The EBRD loan will be provided to Luka Ploče Trgovina, a fully owned subsidiary of Luka Ploče d.d. The privately owned company is listed on the Zagreb Stock Exchange. The total capital investment costs for the liquid-cargo terminal are €16.7 million.
In recent years, the port of Ploče has seen an ambitious investment cycle that has already resulted in the construction of a new container-cargo terminal. Meanwhile, a new dry-bulk cargo terminal is due to be completed by the end of 2016.
Ploče serves the south of Croatia and of Bosnia and Herzegovina. The link with Corridor Vc ensures a connection with Croatia’s A1 motorway, forming part of the European route E65 and connecting Zagreb, Budapest and Vienna. The railway connects to Mostar, Sarajevo, Osijek and further north towards Budapest.
Phil Bennett, EBRD First Vice President, said at signing at the 2015 EBRD Annual Meeting in Tbilisi today: “This is an important investment to strengthen the port of Ploče. New cargo facilities will allow for increased trade which will boost not only the port, but also the hinterland. For the EBRD the development of Croatia’s infrastructure is one of our priorities and we are proud to extend our support to a private company with outstanding prospects.”
Ivan Pavlović, President of the Management Board of Luka Ploče d.d., added: “We appreciate the support of the EBRD for Ploče Port d.d. through this loan to our subsidiary Luka Ploče Trgovina d.o.o. The implementation of this new project will significantly enhance the competitiveness of the local economy. Strengthening Luka Ploče by completing a new liquid-cargo terminal will also boost the regional economy, especially in Bosnia and Herzegovina.”
The EBRD has invested in Croatia since the country’s independence and has invested more than €3.1 billion in over 170 projects to date. The Bank’s activities include all areas of the economy and are especially strong in the infrastructure, corporate, financial institutions and energy sectors.