Palma.—The government is facing bills of millions of euros which it will have to pay to companies who carried out work on the planned train line from Manacor to Arta.

The train project has for months been frozen because funds which had originally been promised from Central Government to support the construction programme were not forthcoming.

On 5th October, the time officially allowed for the suspension of works will come to an end and the regional government faces the possibility that the construction companies will want settlement, currently standing at around 2.8 million euros.

The Balearic Ministry for Environment and Territory is currently in negotiations with the companies concerned to find a solution. But the regional government is still hampered by the fact that it still doesn't know what the future of the train line will be. There is a possibility that with insufficient funds to complete the railway, the earthworks so far undertaken will be turned into natural spaces.

Whilst the final figure to pay remains unclear, the government has been forced to settle 90 million euros of bills to goods and services suppliers on the railway project. The Territory Ministry has serious doubts that it is going to be able to reclaim these amounts from Central Government because the terms of the agreement signed with Madrid during a previous Balearic Socialist Coalition were apparently unclear. The small print of the agreement has reportedly produced clashes between Partido Popular ministry representatives and the Majorcan Socialist coalition (PSM-IV-ExM). The PSM claims that the agreement is still valid but that the present Partido Popular government didn't have the political will to continue the railway.

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