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At a meeting on November 10, the Baltic States prime ministers attained substantial progress on the issue of the European gauge project Rail Baltica, revealed Martins Panke, Press Secretary to the Prime Minister Valdis Dombrovskis.

The discussion was also attended by the European Commission Vice-President for Transport Siim Kallas, who confirmed that Rail Baltica will be eligible for the European Union (EU) funding of 85% of the project costs. Panke emphasized that this is a very important signal, because the overall project costs are very high, moreover, the financing for the project will be received additionally to the EU Cohesion funds.

Likweise, the Latvian Prime Minister Valdis Dombrovskis, the Estonian Prime Minister Andrus Ansip and the Lithuanian Prime Minister Andrius Kubilius agreed to establish a separate company with its headquarters in Riga in order to implement the project.

As reported, in Rail Baltica project, member states will be eligible for funding for detailed investigation of the rail track compatibility, rail line construction work, which is to begin before 2020. Future Rail Baltica financing will be scheduled in the next planning stages until 2030.

Rail Baltica project aims to restore the Baltic States’ direct link with the European rail network and promote regional integration, connecting Helsinki to Tallinn, Riga, Kaunas, Warsaw and Berlin, and potentially extending the route to Venice.