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VILNIUS - After years of wrangling between the three Baltic States, there could finally be a high speed railway that goes from Berlin to Tallinn.
The European Commission has proposed financing the Rail Baltic high-speed railway to the extent of 82 percent, which means that the three Baltic countries would have to finance the project with 97.2 million euros.
The European Commission announced on Monday it would grant the request of the Baltic countries for the financing of Rail Baltica to the tune of 540 million euros.
Of that sum, Estonia’s share would be 213 million euros, while Latvia is to get 281 million, Lithuania 28 million euros and the Rail Baltica joint venture 7 million euros, Rail Baltic project manager Miiko Peris said on Monday at a press conference. The resources can be used as of 2016.
According to Peris about 40 percent of the sum goes toward the preparation works and 60 percent would be used for railway construction.
The next Connecting Europe Facility financing round should take place at the end of the year and additional requests can be submitted for that, he added.
According to the initial schedule the railway should be ready by 2024 or 2025 and the period for using the support should last until that, Peris said. He added that submitting additional requests is definitely necessary.
“According to information known to us the Commission plans to carry out an additional financing round each year. The interest of the Baltic countries is to definitely take part in that but for that we have to show that the project is moving and activities are being carried out,” Peris said.