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BREAKING: Rail Baltica Gains Momentum with EUR 1 Billion Financial Boost from European Commission

BREAKING: Rail Baltica Gains Momentum with EUR 1 Billion Financial Boost from European Commission
photo: LTG, Rail Baltica/Rail Baltica Gains Momentum with EUR 1 Billion Financial Boost from European Commission
26 / 06 / 2023

The implementation of the Rail Baltica European railway line in the Baltic States has received a significant financial boost from the European Commission. With an allocation of nearly EUR 1 billion (EUR 928 million, to be exact), the project is set to transform rail connectivity in the region. Lithuania's share of this funding amounts to EUR 394 million. It is the largest funding Lithuania has ever received from the Connecting Europe Facility (CEF).

"This funding for the further development of the Rail Baltica project is excellent news for Lithuania and the Baltic States, especially given the increased geopolitical importance of this project. It sends a strong signal that this project of exceptional importance is gaining momentum, bringing us closer to the ultimate goal of opening the first sections from Kaunas to Riga as soon as possible and connecting the Baltic region to the common European rail network," said Minister of Transport and Communications Marius Skuodis.

Earlier this year, Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia and the Baltic Joint Undertaking RB Rail AS applied for additional EU funding to implement Rail Baltics on the European railway. The total funding requested by the three Baltic countries then amounted to EUR 954 million, of which Lithuania's direct share was more than EUR 390 million.

"The Lithuanian Railways Group is consistently and determinedly pursuing full integration with Europe, both in terms of business relations and infrastructure. In the latter respect, the Rail Baltica project is of particular importance. In Lithuania, it has reached a new level of maturity, which we believe is one of the main reasons behind the European Commission's decision to grant the project in Lithuania the additional funding requested at the time of application. Timely funding of the project activities is an essential condition for the project to be implemented within the agreed deadlines", says Egidijus Lazauskas, LTG CEO.

The funding will be used for the construction of the railway and its structures from Kaunas towards the border with Latvia: the construction of the crossing and engineering structures, the construction of the access service roads in the sections Kaunas-Switzerland and Šėta-Ramygala, preparatory works, construction supervision, project risk and safety assessment, project compliance assessment and other activities related to the railway construction. The additional funding will also be used for land acquisition activities in two sections, the Kaunas railway junction and the Kaunas-Lithuania-Poland border section.

"Rail Baltica is the largest railway infrastructure project in the history of the Baltic States and will see the construction of an electrified double-track European-style railway line running from Warsaw through Kaunas and Riga to Tallinn across the entire Rail Baltica route. The total length of the Rail Baltica line in the Baltics is 870 km: 392 km in Lithuania, 265 km in Latvia and 213 km in Estonia.

Source: LTG