Lithuania starts rebuilding dismantled rail to Latvia

The state-run Lietuvos Gelezinkeliai (Lithuanian Railways, LG) has started to rebuild a railway stretch from the Mazeikiai oil refinery in northern Lithuania to the Latvian city of Renge removed nearly a decade ago.

The Lithuanian company was last year fined almost €28 million by the European Commission for removing 19 km of tracks.

The company said it had announced tenders for repairs of various stretches across Lithuania, including the Renge stretch, which should be rebuilt by the end of 2019.

Earlier calculations suggest that the rebuilding efforts would cost around €20 million, however, LG now maintains the costs could be at €10 million.

"We managed to complete all planning procedures rather fast. Rebuilding of the Renge stretch have already been started. We expect the step to allow intensifying the cooperation with our strategic partners – Orlen Lietuva and colleagues in Latvia," Mantas Bartuska, CEO at Lietuvos Gelezinkeliai, said in a press release.

The Renge stretch was dismantled in 2008. The €27.87 million fine, which was imposed by the European Commission last year, was paid in early January, with a plea against the EC filed at the European Union's General Court last December.

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