The company behind the Vera – Cartagena toll road will be wound up and the road be nationalised, the state government has announced today. OK, the company itself went bankrupt a few years ago, but today any hope of rescue has been abandoned and the company will be closed down.
In all, eight bankrupt toll roads across the country will be nationalised. In all, these roads owe the banks more than €3.4 billion.
The state says that its main objective is to ensure the roads stay open for users. The exact plan under which they will be nationalised has not been finalised, but a 2014 plan that never went ahead suggested the state assuming 50% of the debt (which would be wrapped into a 30 year bond) and the other 50% being written off.
The state had to move as the companies behind these eight toll roads are all bankrupt and in liquidation courts.
The Vera – Cartagena road cost €760 million, which was underwritten by the state. The company running the road, Aucosta, expected a minimum of 7,000 users a day along the 114 km of toll road. Over the last few years, peak traffic on busy days hasn’t reached 4,000 vehicles, so someone got their figures wrong. The savage cost of the toll-road (€13,20) means it’s only really used by tourists going to San Javier who don’t feel confident in using the back roads.
Will prices drop? Will they heck. They’ll probably go up. 🙁