On 27 February 2017, Bashkir Concession Company (part of VTB Group) and the Government of the Republic of Bashkortostan signed a protocol regarding cooperation in implementing the Eastern Exit concession project in Ufa, the capital of Bashkortostan. The document was signed by President and Chairman of VTB Bank Management Board Andrey Kostin and Prime Minister of the Republic of Bashkortostan Rustem Mardanov. The signing ceremony was also attended by Head of Bashkortostan Rustem Khamitov and Russian Transport Minister Maxim Sokolov.
The project includes the financing, design, construction and subsequent operation of a regional toll road in Bashkortostan and is planned for a period of 25 years.
The concessionaire undertakes to complete a 1.2 km road tunnel that broke ground in 1992; to build a 2.5 km bridge, a 14 km road that links to the M-5 Ural federal highway, and toll booths. They will also develop a traffic control system and establish a road maintenance company.
The next stage of the project will involve signing the concession agreement.
According to Mr Kostin, the Eastern Exit is the largest infrastructure project in Bashkortostan. The new road will contribute to the development of attractive areas of underdeveloped Ufa suburbs, and lead to a significant reduction in the load on the city road network. VTB Group is ready to apply its successful experience of supporting other large infrastructure projects via public-private partnerships. “We believe this arrangement is very promising. VTB is currently participating in four major PPP projects in Russia’s transport infrastructure. Overall, they cost over RUB 350 billion, provided by both Russian and foreign investors,” he said.
“Highways in Bashkortostan are the most important element of the transport system in the Volga Federal District and Russia as a whole,” Rustem Mardanov said. “Today’s collaboration promotes development of interregional ties. The Eastern Exit project is being implemented as part of the Transport Strategy of the Republic of Bashkortostan, which runs until2030, as well as the state programme for the Development of the Bashkortostan Transport System. Building a new exit road from Ufa connecting to M-5 Ural federal highway will boost the region’s investment appeal and help resolve Ufa’s transport problems for years to come.”