The Malta Independent 25 April 2019, Thursday

‘Malta gaining €1.2bn in benefits for every €141 million spent on infrastructure’ - Borg

Monday, 15 April 2019, 13:34 Last update: about 9 days ago

Malta is gaining back €1,200 million in benefits for every €141 million invested when considering just seven infrastructural projects on our country's roads, Transport Minister Ian Borg said today.

"The Marsa-Ħamrun Bypass, the Marsa Junction, Tal-Balal Road, Buqana Road, the Santa Luċija tunnels and Saint Andrews Road - these projects will give us €7 for every €1 we are investing in them. We are speaking about a 61% rate of return on investment for what the government is investing," said Minister Borg during a conference organised by Infrastructure Malta.

During this conference, attended by representatives of several organisations and entities, including workers' Unions and entrepreneur and employer associations, a study commissioned by Infrastructure Malta was presented. This study, carried out by Gordon Cordina and concentrating on 7 infrastructural projects, highlights the benefits which such infrastructural investments bring to the economy and to our road network.

Cordina presented the outcomes of this study in the form of quantifiable and non-quantifiable benefits. Among quantifiable benefits, it is anticipated that these projects will lead to 62,000 tonnes less CO2 emissions per year, 5 million hours saved on travelling time per year and €25 million saved on fuel per year, among others. "This means that an individual will save €75 on fuel every year for every vehicle, which is equivalent to 61% of the COLA given in the 2019 budget."

"These are infrastructural projects which make a positive difference to the country's economy, to the people's pockets, to the environment, and to the time which can be spent with families or working. Today we can see the value of these projects, these solutions to the challenges of traffic and congestion, projects we have been speaking about for the last year and a half and which we always knew would make a difference in the lives of those who use these roads every day," said Minister Ian Borg.

Borg expressed his satisfaction with the results which highlight economic benefits and several other gains, including health gains,, and said that "this only means that our country spent years losing money and suffering from problems caused by a passive attitude where the necessary actions were not taken, where interventions like this towards an improved infrastructure were never implemented but remained shelved plans."

He referred to the study carried out by the European Commission in 2012 about costs related to congestion, and said that if this government hadn't taken these positive steps towards an appropriate infrastructure, these costs would have kept going up. "The Government believes it should bring economic benefits to the people in every possible way, and in this case we are giving people more quality time with their families, less waiting time in traffic, an opportunity to contribute more at the workplace, while contributing to a reduction in health problems through less congestion, among others. These are the results we wanted to achieve from investment."

 "Today we could also see how every type of solution, small or large, short or long-term, is having a positive impact. And we will therefore continue implementing short, medium and long-term solutions to our infrastructure. Today is clear proof that this government's holistic plan is working."


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