Independent technical assistance experts of the European Commission (EC) (JASPERS Independent Quality Review) have provided positive opinion regarding the SJSC (VAS) "Latvijas dzelzceļš" project "Electrification of the Latvian Railway Network".
Upon receipt of positive opinion from independent experts, the project documentation will be submitted to the European Commission for the final decision on the project approval. In the wake of a positive decision of the EC, a contract on the implementation of the project will be signed with the Central Finance and Contract Agency.
First stage of the project will be implemented with the support of co-financing of the Cohesion Fund in the amount of 347 million euro within the framework of the measure 188.8.131.52 "Electrification of the Latvian Railway Network" of Specific Support Objective 6.2.1 "To Provide a Competitive and Environmentally Friendly TEN-T Railway Network Facilitating Its Safety, Quality, and Capacity" of the Operational Programme "Growth and Employment" of the programming period 2014–2020 of the Cohesion Fund of the European Union (EU) Structural Funds.
In the autumn 2018, procurement on the designing and construction of stage one concluded. Four applications were submitted to the phase 1 of the procurement (qualification). Taking into account the complexity of the project to be implemented, assessment of proposals is still in progress. Planned total costs of the stage on of the railway electrification account for 441 million euro.
The railway electrification project is significant both for the transport and logistics sector and the global competitiveness of the national economy of Latvia, furthermore, it will provide substantive contribution to the environmental protection. In general, implementation of the railway electrification project programme is planned in several stages:
- Stage 1: Daugavpils–Krustpils; Rēzekne–Krustpils–Rīga;
- Stage 2: Krustpils–Ventspils;
- Stage 3: Reconstruction of the existing electrified railway network.