Victor Yushchenko took part in a ceremony to open a bridge crossing over the M14 highway near the Kahovka Hydropower Plant.

In his speech, the President said this event was the first step in the 2005-2010 State Program of Road Development. “We all understand how meaningful roads are and how much they bolster our economic potential,” he noted.

The Head of State said the bridge crossing cost UAH 40 mln and had been completed year before.

“When the state regularly funds the construction […] it helps reduce costs by 25% and complete it earlier,” Yushchenko said in an interview with reporters, adding that the efficiency of this crossing was estimated at UAH 350 mln per year. “These are additional savings the region and the whole country will receive.”

The President added that he wanted the cabinet and other executives to “consider the issue of road construction as a challenge for Ukraine.” Although our country is the biggest transit state in Europe, its roads make it obviously lag behind European neighbors.

“Ukraine can raise great funds by implementing its transit policy,” Yushchenko opined, stressing that relevant concepts to develop roads should be formulated to fulfill this goal.

The Head of State said according to one of such concepts they would spend UAH 7 bln to construct roads in 2006. Almost 40% of these funds will be used to renovate roads in rural areas.
Yushchenko reiterated that in one year road services should repave all village roads and only then renovate highways.

“There are also problems with 500 bridges and bridge crossings that are inadequate to safety standards,’ he said.

Then Yushchenko ordered Ukrzaliznytsya (Ukrainian Railway) to equip railway crossings throughout the country and to service them automatically.

Commenting on ways to raise funds for the implementation of this program, he said “each institution that develops roads in Ukraine should give money in 2006.”

“We should seriously mobilize political, governmental and financial resources to build Ukrainian roads,” he stressed.

Addressing those present at the ceremony, the President urged them to be partners of government.
Yushchenko thanked all who took part in the construction. Then he cut the symbolic ribbon to officially open the crossing and drove his car to inspect the site.

Victor Yushchenko also spoke on the new concept on energy security included a special program to renovate hydropower plants.

“In the past years, we have lost many promising capabilities because of insufficient funding and the lack of programs to rebuild hydropower plants, so we are formulating a special program to renovate them,” he said, adding that Ukraine currently produced very little hydropower (2-5% of Ukraine’s energy balance).

This program also includes measures to launch hydropower plants on small rivers in western Ukraine and Pobuzhzhya, “where this practice used to be developed.”

“In those regions there are a few dozens of hydropower plants that can be restored to produce energy for the region by using only two or three turbines,” he stressed.

Yushchenko also said the Kahovka Hydropower Plant should be renovated.

“This plant should be extended and this will be a separate project in our energy program. I am convinced it will be fully implemented very soon,” he said.

Deputy Secretariat Chief-of-Staff Anatoly Matviyenko recited an order to award several builders with state orders, the President’s press service told.

*The 2005-2010 State Program for Road Development was approved by the cabinet in August 2005. Ukraine’s roads should be developed in the following directions:

  • Kyiv-Chop
  • Kyiv-Odessa
  • Kyiv-Kipti-Baturyn-Bachivsk
  • Kharkiv-Simferopol
  • Kyiv-Khrakiv-Dovzhansky

The program is aimed at improving roads and bridges, raising traffic safety, developing infrastructure, providing drivers and pedestrians with information, introducing modern technologies, and paving village roads. Victor Yushchenko personally controls its implementation.


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