The negotiation with the Turkish consortium that should have entirely financed the construction of the Vlora airport failed, the Albanian government announced a new tender, worth 2 million dollars, open to international investors, to take back a hand project from which depends, now more than ever, the feasibility of the full development of tourism in southern Albania.
History of an odyssey
The intention of the Albanian government, Valona airport, which should have been built in Akërn by 2018 to be operational at the end of 2019, should be used to manage the ever-increasing influx of tourists visiting the south of the country, but also to mitigate what is in effect the monopoly of the 'Mother Teresa' Airport of Rinas-Tirana, which represents one of the concessions more profitable of the country.
At the beginning of 2018, the Ministry of Infrastructure and Energy had confirmed that a consortium of three Turkish companies, namely Cengiz Construction, Kalyon Construction and Colin Construction, had submitted an offer to build the airport.
Prime Minister Edi Rama, who had often talked about this great project even on his Facebook page, had enthusiastically announced the start of construction in June 2018.
Then, the first stops, although the bureaucratic procedure was going ahead and, even in July, 2018 was the same Sinan Idrizi, one of the representatives of the Turkish consortium, to reassure that the airport's operation would begin as early as September 2019.
Failure to agree
In early September 2018, the cold shower. On his own page, Rama said more or less like this: 'Unlike what was announced, it was not a real bargain, because it is proving a difficult negotiation '.
The Albanian government had decided to pay the 2,5 consortium millions of euros for consecutive 7 years, by way of coverage / reimbursement for the lost earnings of the new airport management. A sort of guarantee on the flow of passengers. The Turkish company had requested 31,5 for the same period.
Therefore, at the end of September, 2018 closes the games. Outside the Turks, for the Vlora airport we start from scratch.
A new tender
In mid-August, 2019 Albcontrol, the public air traffic management company, announced a new tender, which should take place in September, with a limit fund of 198 million lek (at current exchange rates, slightly more than 1.5 million EUR).
It would seem that there is also an Italian company among those interested in the airport project. The name is not known. In reality, now and in the light of the bankruptcy experience with the Turks, the question is another.
What could be the most appropriate formula for the construction site?
Try again with the concession to the private, with the risk of another missed agreement, or invest public money and therefore will the Albanians themselves to pay their own new airport?