Arsencho Aleksovski, Mayor of Kriva Palanka, describes the progress the city has made in less than a decade and points out city’s opportunities for international investors.
European Times: What are some of the more important projects implemented in the past period and what are city’s current projects?
Arsencho Aleksovski: In the past eight years we have accomplished several projects that have vital meaning for Kriva Palanka, such as the construction of the new main town square named Karposh Uprising, the regulation of the watercourse of the town river and the construction of the bicycle and the walking tracks on the banks of the river Kriva. In collaboration with the Government and the Agency for Youth and Sport, we built a sports hall which, together with the two play grounds for different sports and the tennis field, formed a big sport complex, frequently visited by Kriva Palanka’s citizens.
Kriva Palanka is successfully engaged in two public-private partnership projects. The first project is the construction of a new administrative office building on the site of the old building which was ruined. With this project, the municipality gains 500 m2 of new offices for administration without having to invest municipal funds.
The second project is the construction of four mini hydropower plants on the water supplying system of Kriva Palanka. This project will increase the municipality’s budget for up to €70 000 per year, without changing the water supply or the quality of the water. The municipality also received a new 6.5 km glass-plastic pipeline, built by the private partner with their own funds for the purpose and goals of the projects.
European Times: Which sectors in Kriva Palanka should the foreign investors target?
Arsencho Aleksovski: Sectors that have the greatest investment potential in Kriva Palanka are the mining and the textile industry. We have factories with qualified work force and several years of experience in the production of shoes and we are also open to develop in other sectors such as the automobile industry.
Regarding current foreign investments, we have a new investor in the mine of Toranica-Bulmak from Bulgaria, and an Australian-Macedonian Company is investing in the mine of Luke village. Considering our geographical location, the closest industrial zone is in the neighbouring municipality of Rankovce, which is highly attractive for potential investors, because it is near the trace where will be build a new highway and the railway to Bulgaria, and the existing gas pipelines.
European Times: Why should foreign investors invest in the tourism sector in Kriva Palanka?
Arsencho Aleksovski: I personally believe that besides the mines and our highly qualified work force, one of the best assets that we have are our natural recourses, the beautiful mountain Osogovo, with naturally built skiing tracks, perfectly fitting for an investment in mountain recreational centre. One of the most beautiful touristic places highly visited by foreign tourists, especially from Bulgaria, is the Osogovo Monastery, where through infrastructural investments we are creating a path to make the monastery available for tourists throughout the year.
Our municipality is always open for collaboration, and I would like to invite all the investors that are interested in Kriva Palanka to come and visit us, see all the places and invest here.