Lithuanian Railways to consider every request to pay for Kaliningrad transit

  • 2022-08-31
  • BNS/TBT Staff

VILNIUS – Lietuvos Gelezinkeliai (Lithuanian Railways, LTG) said on Wednesday that it will consider every request from Russian or Belarusian railway operators to pay it for the transit of goods to Kaliningrad and if the Financial Crimes Investigation Service (FNTT) gives clearance, will forward the information to banks so that they can decide if to process the payment.

FNTT said earlier on Wednesday that it will examine requests for clearing payments to LTG by Russian or Belarusian railway operators for Kaliningrad transit on a case-by-case basis. 

Egidijus Lazauskas, CEO of LTG, says that the latest clarifications will bring more clarity.

"Based on them, we will examine each case of the transit of goods separately and provide the necessary information to FNTT, and when we receive their response, we will inform the banks so that they can make decisions on their part," he said in a statement. 

LRT has also received clarification from the Transport Ministry that the railway group can continue to fulfill its contracts with Russian and Belarusian railway operators in line with the European Commission's guidance on sanctions, and that payments for the permitted transit to Kaliningrad are legitimate. 

According to the group, its companies have been providing services to Russian and Belarusian customers only after receiving advance payment for some time now.

Transport Minister Marius Skuodis said on Wednesday that the government has done everything possible to ensure that payments for the transit of sanctioned goods between mainland Russia and its Kaliningrad exclave through Lithuania can continue.  

The minister admitted, however, that there are challenges when it comes to checking cargoes, because of a large number of carriers involved in transit shipments.

LTG resumed the transit of sanctioned goods between Russia and Kaliningrad on July 22 after the European Commission said in its updated guidance that a limited amount of cargo can be transported by rail via Lithuania.