Estonia, European Union have invested €90 million in Rail Baltic so far

Render of a planned Rail Baltic train station in Estonia.
Render of a planned Rail Baltic train station in Estonia. Source: 3TI Progetti

On Thursday, Minister of Economic Affairs and Infrastructure Taavi Aas presented the interim report on the construction the Rail Baltic railway connection in 2019 to the government alongside an overview of 2020 and 2021's significant activities and construction objects.

Aas (Center) last year was significant and the track's infrastructure is being developed as well as the passenger terminal at Tallinn and Pärnu.

"Last year, construction began on the first Rail Baltic site in the form of the Saustinõmme road viaduct, and in the next two years we will continue with an accelerated construction plan and investments - this year tenders will be announced for the construction of seven sites and power line and gas pipeline intersections," he added.

Other major work in the near future mentions the design of the Muuga cargo terminal and the Old Harbor tram connection, the feasibility analysis of the RB dry port and the preparation of the preliminary design of the Pärnu cargo terminal.

The investment will cost 880 million euros over four years

At present, approximately €42 million have been invested in the preparation, design and construction of Rail Baltica in Estonia, and the ongoing work is in the order of €50 million according to contractual obligations.

"Today, therefore, we have invested €90 million of both European support and Estonia's own contribution to the construction of a high-speed railway connection, which will multiply with the acceleration of construction activities in the coming years - nearly €123 million are planned for construction in 2020-2022 alone," said Aas.

"The budget and the state budget strategy envisages investments to the amount of €880 million until 2024, of which 85 percent will be covered by the support from the Connecting Europe Facility," said the Minister.

Aas: Procedural error made in the Pärnu plan

Aas said the government were also briefed on the topic of the renewal of the Pärnu county plan which, due to the decision of the Supreme Court, will have part of the route annulled.

"The May decision of the Supreme Court is a clear indication that considering the scale of the Rail Baltic project, the majority has been carried out correctly, but in one aspect there has been a procedural error," the Minister said.

"Regardless of the complexity of the project, the main priority of the Estonian state is to ensure legal correctness, which is why the relevant ministries are currently considering renewing the county planning procedure to assess the Natura site referred to in the judgment. However, a clear statement from the Supreme Court that both Harju and Rapla County and Pärnu County otherwise they were perfectly legitimate, "added Aas.


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Editor: Helen Wright

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