European Gauge Being Planned Between Kyiv and Odesa

25 October 2017 17:52

The direct railway line between Kyiv and Odesa that is planned for the future may use the 1435-millimeter track gauge, Ukraine’s Minister of Infrastructure Volodymyr Omelian announced at the roundtable on "The Current Concession Projects in the Ukrainian Seaport Sector," the CFTS portal reports.

On the promising concession projects in Ukraine, the minister said, "We also want to include the first concession railroad, the European gauge, which will connect Kyiv and Odesa, on this list. There is already interest from foreign investors."

Earlier, the minister said that high-speed railroads might appear in Ukraine in the next 5-10 years. According to him, the first high-speed railroads may be built on the Kyiv-Odesa and Kyiv-Warsaw routes.

"We are currently negotiating with Chinese companies on the terms of a public-private partnership. I hope that these negotiations will be successful. Regarding time, it is at least 5-10 years from today if the negotiations are successful and we have efficient management of Ukrzaliznytsia," Omelian said.

Before that, it was reported that China could consider the possibility of financing a high-speed railway line in Ukraine. Then-board chairman of the Ukrainian Railways public joint-stock company (Ukrzaliznytsia) Wojciech Balczun announced after a visit to China in March this year that he received signals from the Chinese about the possibility of financing construction of a high-speed railway in Ukraine.

Omelian spoke about the need to build a new railway line from Odesa to Kyiv one year ago. Omelian said that the absence of such a line was one of the significant railway problems in southern Ukraine. "Trains take the long route. Therefore, the Intercity trains that should have covered the distance in a few hours take 6-7 hours. We are working on it, but, unfortunately, these are completely different amounts of investments, much larger figures," he said.

As the CFTS portal reported, there are plans to link Lviv and Warsaw with a rail line with a 1435-millimeter track gauge through Rava-Russka.