Rail Baltica Express Vilnius-Riga-Tallinn – a vision of a united Baltic Sea region.
The Minister of Transport and Communications of the Republic of Lithuania Rimantas Sinkevicius and Director of the European Mobility Network at DG Mobility and Transport Jean-Eric Paquet will be present in the event.
The conferences, held on board the train, will focus on the Rail Baltica 2 project. This project aims to build a railway connection between Helsinki, Tallinn, Riga, Vilnius and Warsaw continuing on to Berlin. It is one of the most important investment projects to be implemented in the Baltic Sea region. In addition, on 16 September, the Transport ministers from Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia, Finland and Poland signed a joint declaration on the basic principles of establishing the Rail Baltica 2 joint venture.
The track of Rail Baltica is a part of the strategic transport corridor between the North and Baltic States. It connects Baltic Eastern Seaports with the North Sea ports. Out of three Baltic States, only Lithuania already has the track of Rail Baltica. The track should be expanded to Kaunas until 2015.
The new EU Trans-European Transport Network (TEN-T) infrastructure policy incorporates 9 strategic transport corridors. Therefore, it is expected that this strategic corridor will significantly improve the European transport connections between East and West, as well as will contribute to the further strengthening of the EU single market.
It is planned that the funding under the Connecting Europe Facility (CEF) will be provided for this project. The pre-conference held on the train is a part of a very large set of conferences Ten-T Days 2013 which will be held in Tallinn 16-18 October. In comparison with the present financial framework, the EU funding for transport projects in the period 2014-2020 will be tripled by reaching EUR 26 billion (circa LTL 90 billion).