The Odesa regional administration has decided to support construction of a railway to Moldova and Romania, bypassing Transnistria. This was announced by the Odesa region’s Governor Mikheil Saakashvili, the CFTS reports.
"One of my first decrees ordered preparation of a project for construction of this railway, and now we are beginning to build it together with Ukrzaliznytsia. On our side, the green light has been given. We expect Kyiv’s final decision tomorrow. By building this road, we will block the flow of money to separatists and deprive a potential enemy the opportunity to blackmail us with blockade of railways," Saakashvili wrote on his Facebook page.
The head of the Odesa regional administration’s department for investment in the transport sector, Volodymyr Shemaev, also said that implementation of this infrastructure project would allow the region to avoid depending on the railway in the self-proclaimed Transnistrian Moldavian Republic. In addition, the railway will further connect the Reni port with districts of the Odesa region and increase the flow of trains through Ukrainian territory, which, in turn, will lead to an increase in financial income for Ukrzaliznytsia and reduce the excessive tariff for transit through Transnistria.
According to Shemaev, Moldova is interested in the project because construction of railway branches is expected to increase the flow of Moldovan transit goods to ports in Greater Odesa.
"Restoration of the Berezino-Basarabeasca railway segment in the Tarutinskyi district of the Odesa region is a difficult project in terms of the speed of financial return, among other things. However, success is guaranteed if all the partners – the Cabinet of Minister, Ukrzaliznytsia, the Odesa regional administration, and the Moldovan Railways – approach it jointly. We are very much hoping that the appropriate funds will be allocated in 2017 financial plans and budgets of the partners," the official said.