VILNIUS - A major railroad project connecting five countries has been given the green light by transport ministers this week. Ministers from the Baltic States, Poland and Finland on Sept. 16 signed a declaration that would allow the first part of the project to go ahead. The plans would see a railway built connecting Finland, the Baltics and Poland, creating faster connection times between countries and boosting local economies.
It is estimated work on the project could be finished in a decade.
Welcoming the agreement, Lithuania’s Transport and Communications Minister Rimantas Sinkevicius said: “This declaration underlines the shareholders’ political will to implement Rail Baltica and build a line which is modern and adapted to high-speed trains. It will connect the five countries of the region. It is significant that the gauge of Rail Baltica - the European gauge - will connect the capitals of the Baltic States.”
He added: “The signing of the Declaration reaffirms, once again, not only the full support expressed by five Baltic region countries, but also their confidence that with the unity and joint efforts the project will be implemented in the next decade.”
Funding for the project will come from the European Union.