10 Aug 2022 11:38

EU allows Lithuania to continue rail transit of coal to Kaliningrad on limited scale

VILNIUS. Aug 10 (Interfax/BNS) - Lithuania will continue the transit of Russian coal and other solid fuel by rail to the Kaliningrad region despite the enactment on Wednesday of the European Union's fifth package of sanctions against Russia, the BNS news agency said.

The European Commission has clarified that there is a waiver as part of this ban for Lithuania that permits it to continue the rail transit of a limited amount of sanctioned goods.

The information provided to BNS by Lithuanian Railways (Lietuvos gelezinkeliai) shows that one million tonnes of coal were transported by rail to Kaliningrad from other Russian regions through Lithuania from January to May of this year.

Russia resumed the transit of goods subject to EU sanctions to the Kaliningrad region in July, nearly a month after Lithuania limited this transit, citing clarification given by the European Commission.

However, after Russia called those restrictions a blockade of the Kaliningrad region and threatened to retaliate, the European Commission issued further clarification in July, lifting the majority of restrictions on rail transit. The transit of sanctioned goods by automobile transport was banned.

According to the European Commission's clarification, the amount of transit cargoes this year should be calculated based on the average amount of cargoes transported in 2019-2021.