Ulcinj-in-The Adriatic-Ionian transport corridorOpening to Europe through Adriatic-Ionian highway

Translated by Anida Resulbegu

Informal information that was published on Tuesday in online press has immensely pleased all Ulcinj citizens. The news that Adriatic-Ionian road, the trans-European highway which will connect seven European countries, including Turkey will enter Montenegro in the territory of Ulcinj, leaves no one indifferent. The passage of the highway in the immediate hinterland of the city will have a tremendous effect on Ulcinj’s economy, especially tourism. It would probably help our guests to arrive in Ulcinj from the Airport in Podgorica for about 40 minutes, and for almost the same time could be arriving from the airport “Rinas” in Tirana. It should be an impulse for the reconstruction process in the so-called privatization of the demolished hotel industry in this municipality, which once accomplished one third of the county’s tourist turnover, the city with the main resources on the Montenegrin coast. While a consensus was reached toward the opposition of constructions in Valdanos and Solana, all are eagerly waiting to construct hotels on the inner part of the city: at the site of Suka, “Galeb’, “Mediteran” and to finally begin with constructions on the Long beach and Ada Bojana.

The fact is that these extremely attractive areas caught foreign companies attention as from the east so from the west. For a city that is dying, only big investment would raise the tide and push to the margins some of unworthy actions of failed local politicians, and also protectors of Budva, Bar and Podgorica. This especially applies to the incomprehensible delay around implementation project of water supply and drainage of wastewater which initially costs around 21 million Euros, funds that has provided the government of Germany!? It is clear that without those assumptions investment will aggravate, Port Milena remains ecological bomb as well as the entire area of Stoj, respectively immediate hinterland of Great Beach where some six thousand houses are not connected to the sewerage system, and the sea is more and more polluted. Therefore, the executive director of the hotel – tourist enterprise “Ulcinj Riviera” Radomir Mikan Zec warns that political games should not be allowed to jeopardize the development of Ulcinj.

For what lies ahead he should be the following. It is confirmed that for this heavenly area mighty consortiums of European countries are interested, as well as the Royal Group of the United Arab Emirates. “Their representatives have recently visited Ada Bojana. After the first announcements, they are planning to build the airport in Ulcinj, and on the Isle ten hotels with five stars or more. This means that will provide job opportunities for more than thousand workers” stated Zec by adding: “If the business is agreed, Royal Group will enable the road infrastructure in this part of the coast, which will improve transport connections of Ulcinj, with other parts of the country but also with other parts of the world. Such an investment would improve the capacity of trade, agriculture and would increase the quality of tourism”.

That is undoubtedly a serious intent, evidenced by the fact that Prime Minister Milo Djukanovic stayed in the Emirates at the same time as his Albanian counterpart, Edi Rama. For such large projects such as highway, but not only the hotel complexes construction, we shall count on the regional component. Djukanovic and Rama in Brussels on Tuesday discussed about common touristic projects, especially in the area around the Bojana River and Skadar Lake.

It is also extremely important that in this part will be opened a new crossing border to unload Sukobin-Murican. Last year that way has passed about 1.8 million people, or nearly four times more than planned when the border was opened 13 years ago. It is also significant that interior ministers of the two countries Rasko Konjevic and Saimir tahiri reached an agreement last week that the border should also be opened and in disposal for importation and exportation of the goods.”Such a realistic thing should be expected in fall of 2016” states the Mayor of Ulcinj Fatmir Djeka. As stated only after completing the third phase of road reconstruction to the border with Albania, respectively the construction of the highway from Ulcinj to Vladimirs rigid, in the length of 13 kilometers, will enable trucks to easy pass this way. It is known that these nine million worthy works will start in the fall and last for over one year. “ With the realization of these projects Ulcinj will no longer be traffic ‘appendix’” says Djeka.

According to the independent MP Dritan Abazovic , only then commences the real story about the tourism development in Ulcinj. “Once the season lasted for six month, now it has been reduces to 45 days. We became fast food destination, because there is no big spending, nor large hotel capacity to accommodate guests and employ workers” he says, citing that a vision is required, a lot of knowledge and determination to amend this situation.

“While those who finish college usually do not return to Ulcinj, because they are not able to find work, the ones who have completed secondary education can be employed as waiters and bartenders, or set chairs and umbrellas on the beach. And then so poorly paid, they quickly spend it because they are prone to vices and it is not easy. It is so for young Orthodox, and no better for Albanian youth. Everyone’s economic situation is equally bad” points out the archpriest of Ulcinj Radojica Bozovic. Indeed the average salary in Ulcinj is the lowest in the country.

It is a sin for the city with such potential. With a little dedication and love great work can be created. It is apparent the example of the Old Town where this season started much earlier and more successful than in previous years.

Mustafa CANKA

Source: Monitor