24 Mar 2010 16:27

BAM-2 may cost 800 bln rubles

KHABAROVSK. March 24 (Interfax) - An initiative to boost capacity on the Baikal-Amur Mainline (BAM) voiced by the presidential representative in the Far East federal district, Viktor Ishaev, has the support of Russian Railways (RZD) CEO Vladimir Yakunin.

The expansion work will be carried out as a state-private partnership, Yakunin said.

Ishaev took part in meetings on the issue of developing the Baikal-Amur rail zone in Moscow on Tuesday. "I am firmly confident that BAM must be developed. This rail mainline will help to further develop the Far East and will serve as a source of growth for the federal district. According to provisional calculations, construction of the second branch will cost 800 billion rubles," Ishaev said.

The justification for the road development project was prepared by regional officials together with the Transportation Ministry, RZD, companies interested in freight shipment, and potential investors. In addition, a working group will be created to draft proposals concerning the program for developing the territory through which BAM passes. The group will be made up of officials from the Regional Development Ministry, the administrations of the presidential representatives in the Far East and Siberia and of the regions, and interested organizations.

RZD is already conducting serious work to prepare the justification for BAM-2, Yakunin said.

It was reported earlier that Yakunin has said 400 billion rubles in 2010 prices are needed to develop BAM infrastructure.