Finland to modernize northwestern railways to streamline Arctic-Asia goods transport

0 Comment(s)Print E-mail Xinhua, June 4, 2020
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HELSINKI, June 3 (Xinhua) -- Finnish Minister of Transport and Communications Timo Harakka on Wednesday said that modernizing a section of railway in northwestern Finland will facilitate the transport of goods from the Arctic coast to Asia.

His remarks came one day after the Finnish government reconfirmed its commitment to modernize the cross-border rail connection to neighboring Sweden.

Speaking at a press conference, Harakka said that the Europe-Asia connection would be created by bridging the current gap.

"I am sure the modernization of the rail connection will offer major possibilities, when ready, for transportation to and from the Arctic coast," Harakka said.

He pointed out that there are already container services on the railway that extends from Finland via Kazakhstan to China.

He noted that with the present technology, even cold storage products can be shipped by rail for long distances, and, if the Arctic route could be created, it can be used, for example, for the transport of Norwegian fish to the Chinese market.

Currently, the last 20 kilometers of the cross-border rails on the Finnish side are still not electrified. Harakka said the construction could begin in 2021.

The modernization program and a new cross-border bridge would cost an estimated 40 million euros (45 million U.S. dollars). Enditem

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