Latvia makes Rīga-Daugavpils-Vilnius train a priority

Latvia supports the renewal of train traffic between Latvia and Lithuania and the priority is the Rīga-Daugavpils-Vilnius route, the Latvian Ministry of Transport said in a statement on August 29.

The Ministry said it would promote the mobility of people between Latvia and Lithuania and at the same time improve passenger transport on the Daugavpils-Rīga route.

Both countries are currently negotiating the renewal of passenger train traffic in order to find the most mutually effective solution.

“It is important for us that as many passengers as possible whose mobility needs relate not only to arrival in one or the other capital, but also to a significant and permanent demand for such a service, use this route,” said Transport Minister Jānis Vitenbergs (National Alliance).

JSC Passenger Train and the Lithuanian national passenger train operator “LTG Link” have carried out calculations and forecasts for possible routes, their operators and the times of service, developing a number of options for train renewal between Latvia and Lithuania.

Passenger Train estimates show it would cost several hundred thousand euros, depending on the choice.

A single offer and the necessary grants from national budgets have yet to be decided.

Talks on connecting the capitals of all three Baltic States to passenger train routes were brought to light in September 2021, when the Baltic States Express traveled from Tallinn through Riga to Vilnius, marking the European Railway Year. 

There are also hopes that a service from Rīga to Tartu in Estonia could be revived to coincide with that city's stint as a European Capital of Culture in 2024 – but again, no concrete commitments have yet been forthcoming.

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