Rail Baltica Global project is an initiative of great significance and added value both in the Baltic Sea region and Europe as a whole. Rail Baltica is an essential part of the European standard 1435 mm gauge Trans - European Transport Network (TEN-T) North Sea - Baltic Corridor – a new electrified high speed double standard gauge railway line equipped with European Railway Traffic Management System ERTMS connecting Tallinn with the Lithuanian - Polish border and further up to Warsaw via a modernized railway line corresponding to the technical requirements of Rail Baltica. It will link Europe’s largest ports of Hamburg, Rotterdam and Antwerp with the Baltics.
Rail Baltica - part of TEN-T North Sea-Baltic Corridor
Completion of the whole TEN-T network is set for 2030. Rail Baltica as a vital part of it targets completion within the next 2021-2027 Multiannual Financial Framework.
Rail Baltica project
- the largest infrastructure project in the Baltic region over the last 100 years
- for both passenger and freight traffic
- length: 870 km (~265 km in Latvia)
- max speed: 249 km/h (passenger), 120 km/h (freight)
- project is implemented in parallel in Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania
- financed 81-85% by EU, Connecting Europe Facility instrument and co-financed by the Baltic countries
- Rail Baltica project is sometimes described as a symbolic return of the Baltic countries into Europe – up until WWII the Baltic countries were already connected to other European capitals by a 1435 mm gauge railway line while since the middle of the 20th century the Baltic countries have been mainly linked to the East-West railway axis using the Russian 1520 mm gauge.
- At the beginning of the 90ties after the initiative of 11 Baltic Sea countries an international high-speed railway line Tallinn - Berlin was first marked in the cartographic materials of the region and discussions on spatial planning started regards connectivity of the Baltic countries with Central Europe by way of a North - South railway line.
- In 2017 all three Baltic parliaments ratified the Inter-Governmental Agreement for the Rail Baltica project.
- In 2018 the European Commission signed the Implementing Decision on the Rail Baltica cross-border project on the North Sea-Baltic Core Network Corridor hereby ensuring the commitment of the EC and all EU member states to implement the project.
- Rail Baltica project is a key EU infrastructure project included in the transport net priority lists, marked on the main transport corridor development maps and is gaining momentum in fostering security in the Baltic region.