Transport, Industry and Trade Ministries to assess corporate demand for planned White Sea-Komi-Ural railway
© RIA Novosti. Igor Ageyenko

Transport, Industry and Trade Ministries to assess corporate demand for planned White Sea-Komi-Ural railway

Russia's Ministry of Transport and Ministry of Industry and Trade will evaluate the potential demand for the planned White Sea-Komi-Ural (Belkomur) railway among various current companies and future shippers, TASS reports, quoting Belkomur General Director Yury Dyomochkin.

"The regions, Russian Railways and we assessed the potential demand for the planned railway. The survey was updated earlier this year. But Russian Railways used a very realistic approach, focusing only on current companies and their business plans. Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin has now instructed the Ministry of Transport and the Ministry of Industry and Trade to find out what industrial shippers in the Urals and Siberian federal districts are interested in the Belkomur project using available shipping forecast data," Dyomochkin told TASS after a meeting of the inter-governmental Russian-Chinese commission.

Ministry of Industry and Trade experts reviewed the current manufacturing plants, regional and federal plans for developing specific territories, freight volumes after implementing planned projects, and the issuance of mining and production-expansion licenses. "Our most important task right now is to work with investors, shippers, ministries and our partners and to report on the state of the draft concession agreement in the fourth quarter of 2016, and whether we can submit the agreement or whether we need help," Dyomochkin said.

The project is a new 1,161-kilometer railway that will link Solikamsk and Arkhangelsk via Syktyvkar, TASS reports. The project is included in the national transport strategy until 2030, the country's railway transport development strategy until 2030, and a scheme for siting new transport infrastructure facilities that was drafted by the Ministry of Transport.

There are plans to implement 39 more investment projects in northwestern Russia, while building the railway. The implementation of the comprehensive program's projects will attract over 720 billion rubles' worth of private investment, swell the GDP by 1.3 trillion rubles in the first ten years and create over 28,000 jobs.

The new railway is to handle 35 million metric tons of freight annually. Coal, mineral fertilizer, crude oil, timber, ore, construction materials and containers will be delivered to the main Northern Sea Route hubs, including Murmansk, Arkhangelsk, Belomorsk and later the Sabetta port.