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On July 13, 2018, the Innovation and Networks Executive Agency (INEA), joint venture of three Baltic states RB Rail AS, the Ministry of Economics and Communication of Estonia, the Ministry of Transport of Latvia and the Ministry of Transport and Communication of Lithuania signed the Connecting Europe Facility (CEF) Grant Agreement for the construction of the Rail Baltica conventional railway infrastructure. The total value of the Agreement is nearly 130 million euros while the CEF contribution will be of a maximum amount of 110 million euros which is 85% of total eligible costs.
The main objectives for the additional funding received under the third CEF Grant Agreement are to significantly progress with construction activities in Lithuania on Kaunas–Lithuanian/Latvian border section, including to build a bridge over Neris river, construct access roads to railways for the whole section, and start construction preparatory works on the Pärnu–Latvian border section in Estonia; to design railway section Upeslejas to the Vangaži maintenance facilities in Latvia; complete the consolidation of preliminary technical design for the entire railway line, to continue the design phase for all the elements of the Global project; to identify infrastructure components, inputs and resources that would be more cost-efficient if procured in a consolidated fashion as a result of economies of scale; to carry out thorough supplier market assessments to determine optimum procurement and deployment strategies; to prepare grounds for taking a decision on the manager of the built infrastructure as well as to increase the maturity of the Global project moving towards an effective project governance setup.
The funding is intended to be used for actions such as assessments and studies, technical design, preliminary design, spatial planning, construction work, owner’s supervision, project implementation support measures and publicity measures.
The money allocated under the last Grant Agreement has been divided among the beneficiaries (three Baltic States) including the contribution foreseen for RB Rail AS accordingly – Estonia receiving nearly 6 million euros (CEF contribution almost 5,1 million euros), Latvia – about 8 million euros (CEF contribution almost 6,9 million euros), and Lithuania – approximately 115.6 million euros (CEF contribution nearly 98,4 million euros).
Hitherto the three Baltic states and RB Rail AS have received two grants designed under the European Union funding instrument CEF for the construction of the Rail Baltica conventional railway infrastructure. Along with the Grant Agreement signed on July 13, 2018, the total value of the EU grant for the project is nearly 824 million euros. The total CEF contribution for the activities foreseen under the three Grant Agreements is making up 85% of the total eligible costs, giving financial support for the implementation of the project up to a maximum of 683 million euros.
Currently, available project financing under the three Grant Agreements split according to the beneficiary countries:
This article first appeared on www.railbaltica.org
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