Thursday, April 15, 2021

Spain is not interested in the Algarve-Huelva rail link

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Tiago Petinga / Lusa

The Minister of Infrastructure, Pedro Nuno Santos

The Minister of Infrastructure and Housing, Pedro Nuno Santos, revealed this Wednesday in parliament that Spain is not interested in the high-speed rail link between Vila Real de Santo António and the Spanish city of Huelva.

During a regimental hearing at the parliamentary committee on Economy, Innovation, Public Works and Housing, the minister regretted that the Spanish Government does not share the same position as the Portuguese regarding the connection between the Algarve and Andalusia.

“We are completely in favor of that. AND we find it incomprehensible that the Mediterranean corridor ends in Huelva and is not extended to the Algarve and that there is no opportunity for the Algarve to benefit from a connection that brings a set of tourism ”, he said.

Pedro Nuno Santos stressed that the connection between Vila Real de Santo António and Huelva is considered “fundamental” by the Portuguese Government, but without the interest of the Spanish “nothing done”.

“The problem is that the Spaniards have shown no interest and that makes our job very difficult. We will not be able to make a call to Huelva if the Spaniards do not want to, ”he reiterated.

However, the Minister of Infrastructure and Housing assured that the Portuguese Government has done and will continue to do a awareness-raising work with the Spanish Government.

“We are doing what we can. This topic was discussed at the Summit, we have already had several meetings, but their interest is not the same as ours ”, he pointed out.

Pedro Nuno Santos also defended the reopening of the Douro and Régua line to Barca de Alva (Viana do Castelo), but said that it will not extend on the Spanish side.

“The extension to Barca de Alva has a very interesting tourist potential, even more than the connection to Spain, because we will not have it. The Spaniards have no interest and have already told us, ”he said.

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