Luka Novi Sad is the only remaining port with a majority stake in the state and the state is ready for significant investments in water transport in general.
"We are finalizing the real estate of the port of Novi Sad.In order to be able to carry out the privatization, in accordance with the regulations of Serbia, it is necessary to allocate port land and infrastructure, which remain the property of the Republic. Serbia, so that the subject of privatization will be a business port and what is called suprastructure – cranes, buildings, warehouses and such like, "said Water Transport Minister Veljko Kovačević to Tanjug.
He said that more than 15 million euros in investments in Luka & # 39; s development will be provided through privatization: the construction of a new operational bank, new silos & mechanization.
This will speed up its work, as Luka currently overloads about one million tonnes of goods per year, with a capacity of more than 2.5 million tonnes.
"Outdated mechanization, inefficiency and sluggishness of the port is something that is currently" murdering "on the market, both privatization and new investment capital should allow a faster development of the port," noted Kovacevic.
It is being implemented, he adds, the procedure for the allocation of part of the property and the transfer to the Republic of Serbia and the privatization documentation is currently being finalized.
"We expect that in September we will have an open tender for the privatization or selection of the port operator. We have a huge interest in this port, the most renowned companies in the world in the field of port activities," he said.
According to him, some of these companies are Dubai Port World from the United Arab Emirates, the German Renus and the American group Vlone.
A large number of other well-known companies have already sent a letter of intent.
Kovačević announced that the following year the construction of a bulk and bulk cargo terminal in the port of Smederevo begins, for which the project is currently being carried out.
"By the end of the year we will have approved the complete technical documentation and then conclude the tender for the selection of contractors and supervision." We expect the conclusion of the contract and the start of the works in November next year, and the deadline for completion is two years. from 60 hectares, which must overload more than five million tons of cargo annually ".
The estimated value of the entire port of Smederevo is 93 million euros, of which 42 million is the value of port infrastructure.
Serbia has the obligation to build a port infrastructure, so 50% of the funds will come from the budget and for the second half they are already negotiating with the European Investment Bank on the closure of the so-called "framework loan for the development of the river and transport infrastructure, says Kovačević.
This year the contractor will be selected as contractor for the reconstruction of the Djerdap 1-boat terminal, worth 28.5 million euros, which will be co-financed by the European Commission with a subsidy of 12 million euros.
"This project is of great importance, not only for Serbia, but also for sailing through Europe, the infrastructure spur of the Danube, and if this terminal is full of traffic on the Danube, it will stop in Europe." With the EIB we negotiated the rest of the 17 million euros to be secured against the loan. The tendering procedure for the selection of contractors and supervision is under way. "
In December, the contract is expected to be completed and then the contractor has six months to prepare the rest of the technical documentation and in August of next year a shipwreck will be closed due to the start of the works.
Kovačević says that the works will be finished in September 2020.
The Ministry will also implement the AtoN project this year, in which the most modern navigation signage on the Danube will be introduced.
"We are introducing IT in the management of waterway safety, we already have river information services and the Atona is their upgrade and they will be introduced with electronic waterway marking." With the current navigation system we will install GPS transponders, which will be visible in all sailing conditions and will be able to sail ships in the Serbian part of the Danube, even when the fog, the night and the like, "said the deputy minister.
This project will be completed by the end of the year.
Also, the introduction of hydro-meteorological stations is planned for next year, which will provide accurate data on the height of the waves, the speed of water, visibility and the like. The data will be able to use the commanders of the ship.
Kovačević has also announced that work will begin in the first half of September to eliminate six critical issues on our Danube stream, which will be completed by the end of 2020.
After that, the entire Danube sector in Serbia will comply with the strictest international standards, which means that we will not suspend the suspension of shipping on our territory even at extremely low water levels.
Six critical points for sailing lie between Belgrade and Backa Palanka: Futog, Susek, Arankina Ada, Beška, Čortanovci and Preliv.
All these projects will enable further growth of freight transport through the Danube.
In 2017, Serbia transported 10.5 million tonnes of goods to the Danube and it is expected that after all these projects the transport will be expanded to almost 15 million tonnes, of which almost nine million tonnes would have to be transhipped in the ports of Serbia.