Work has begun on the Netherlands Maastricht tunnel, which, once finished, will complete a vital TEN-T link connecting northern and southern Europe.

The $1.043bn project will see a tunnel built within urban Maastricht along the route of the E25/A2 motorway.

The project will remove the last six remaining traffic lights along a route extending from Amsterdam to Italian regions of Genova and Palermo, improving the traffic flow along the road.

The tunnel will also connect the traffic in the city of Maastricht to the A79 motorway and a key industrial estate.

The EC is contributing £22.67m towards the project under the European Economic Recovery Plan 1.