EXPO 2027 – a great opportunity or a smokescreen for demolishing Belgrade Fair

The future Serbian government will have a four-year-mandate – that’s what Serbian President Aleksandar Vučić promised on election night – which is unprecedented in the era of SNS’s rule. Within that mandate, EXPO 2027 is supposed to take place which the President calls „opportunity of all opportunities.

One of the plans, related to the organization of EXPO 2027, relates to the site of the Belgrade Fair which is supposed to be relocated to the outskirts of the city. As for the costs of EXPO 2027, the total estimated costs, for now, are around a billion euros – 578 million euros for the EXPO 2027 and 418 million euros for the construction of a new national stadium which will be used for EXPO purposes.

The money should come from the loan. To this amount, we should also add the costs related to the construction of a train line that will transport the passengers to the new location of the Belgrade Fair.

“The entire project, as the president said, will cost 15 billion euros to implement. Ten days ago, Saudi Arabia won to host EXPO 2030 (which is a much bigger event than EXPO 2027) and Saudi officials said that the project will cost them between seven and eight billion euros. I want to find out why EXPO 2027 would cost so much“, says the journalist Miša Brkić.

Another problem is that the costs of government-funded projects often increase several times during implementation, so it a close inspection of these would be required.

“EXPO does not have the capacity to boost the Serbian economy. It is a small-scale project and it is not an infrastructure project. It is not like Ireland’s decision to bring in IT and pharmaceutical companies and give them perks which led to an incredible development of the Irish economy. I think that the whole thing is a smokescreen for demolishing the Belgrade Fair”, assesses Miša Brkić.

And it doesn’t end there. Everything that needs to be built will be done according to a special law that is also questionable because this law bypasses the regular public procurement procedure and expedites the process of land expropriation.

(N1, 08.01.2024)


This post is also available in: Italiano

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