EU Council OKs development of European-gauge railway line to Klaipeda

  • 2024-06-13
  • BNS/TBT Staff

VILNIUS – The Council of the European Union on Thursday approved, based on Lithuania's proposal, the development of a new European-gauge railway line to Klaipeda, the Transport Ministry said.

The revised Trans-European Transport Network (TEN-T) Regulation also includes a new transport corridor connecting the Baltic, Black and Aegean Seas, and additional links with Ukraine, it said in a press release.

"The inclusion of the European-gauge railway line to Klaipeda in the new TEN-T Regulation is a solid achievement of and for our country, and the entire Baltic region that will help speed up the development of infrastructure that is important for the whole of Europe," said Deputy Transport Minister Loreta Maskalioviene.

The development of the North-South transport corridor, which provides strategic transport links with Northern, Southern and Western Europe, is important for Lithuania, she said.  

The ministry said the European-gauge railway to Klaipeda would improve transport and logistics links in the Baltic region and Eastern Europe, create a viable alternative to road transport, and help diversify the Lithuanian seaport's operations and open up new markets.

"The Regulation also defines priority European standard track development directions in Ukraine. Along with Rail Baltica and the planned European gauge line to Klaipeda, it would create a new and shortest transport corridor from Klaipeda as well as other Baltic Sea ports up to Ukraine," it said.

The TEN-T network also includes Lithuania's key international road and rail links, such as Rail Baltica, the Via Baltica and Vilnius-Klaipeda motorways, the Kaunas intermodal terminal, the port of Klaipeda, and the airports of Vilnius, Kaunas and Palanga.