During 2014-2020 financial period, EUR 1.47 billion of EU structural funds are envisaged to be used for the upgrade of transport infrastructure, stated the Minister of Transport and Communications of the Republic of Lithuania Rimantas Sinkevičius.
Priority in the transport sector will be given to intermodal transport system. For the first time, the largest investments will be earmarked not to the upgrade of road infrastructure, but to the rail: 38 percent of the funds will be allocated to roads, 44 percent to railways. The reason of it is to fulfill the objective of the EU Directive – transport of goods by less-pollutant modes of transport i.e. shift of traffic from road to other modes of transport, chiefly rail and water. In addition, emphasis will be put on the development of sustainable urban mobility, traffic safety, implementation of Intelligent Transport Systems, improvement of energy-efficiency, development of environmentally-friendly modes of transport.
In order to promote the development of advanced information society, a quarter (25 percent) of funds will be earmarked to optimize the information and communication technology infrastructure. Around 18 percent of the funds will be used to the development of the next generation internet access by increasing the availability of electronic communications infrastructure.
Moreover, Information and Communication Technologies will be used in transport sector more widely. Intelligent Transport Systems and services are planned to be installed in order to automate traffic management system, optimize freight transportation and logistics and create more efficient public transport system. In order to improve the road, rail, water and flight traffic safety and well as increase the security of aviation, the advanced technologies are planned to be implemented as well.
It is expected that the largest investment projects of the period 2014-2020 will be: development of the project “Rail Baltica”, electrification of railway lines, parts of international transport corridor IXB, the development of the highway “Via Baltica”, phase three of Vilnius Western Bypass, dredging of Klaipeda port channel, reconstruction of Vilnius International Airport’s runaway, and other projects improving road safety.
In the previous EU financial period, around EUR 2 billion of EU funds were earmarked to the transport infrastructure, in the period of 2004-2006 – more than EUR 400 million and in 2007-2013 – more than EUR 1.5 billion. The investments made in the financial period 2014-2020 have been implemented successfully as well: by the end of this year, nearly EUR 50 million of EU funds will be used for the modernization of road and railway projects.
This information was given on 11 December 2015 during a conference organized by the Ministry of Transport and Communications of the Republic of Lithuania “European Union’s Investments in the Transport Sector. Results, challenges and plans for solutions”.