SOLIDARITY Transport Hub (CPK) and Ukrainian Railways (UZ) have signed a cooperation agreement that covers the preparation of a feasibility study for new 1435mm-gauge connections between Poland and Ukraine, including a Warsaw - Lviv - Kiev high-speed line.

The three-year agreement was signed on January 18 during the Railway Direction Days 2023 conference held in Warsaw.

The high-speed line to Lviv and Kiev ultimately would be an extension of the Warsaw - Lublin route that CPK is developing as part of Poland’s high-speed network centred on a new airport outside Warsaw.

The new line would have a maximum speed of 250km/h.

CPK says it will exchange knowledge and experience, sharing its technical standards and high-speed operating model with UZ. A working group will be established to meet the objectives of the agreement through workshops, joint research and exchange of documentation.

The partners will also jointly seek opportunities to obtain European Union (EU) funding for the planned new lines, looking to implement EU infrastructure standards including ETCS and GSM-R.

CPK and UZ agreed to jointly develop a management model for the new lines, and declared their willingness to contribute to the reconstruction of Ukraine once the current conflict is over.

“This is a historic moment,” says CPK CEO, Mr Mikołaj Wild. “Together with Ukrainian Railways, we are starting joint work on the Warsaw - Lviv - Kiev high-speed line. The shortest route from Ukraine to the EU goes through Poland and CPK.”

“Today’s agreement aims to improve railway links between Ukraine, Poland and the EU, facilitate passenger traffic, improve economic exchange and strengthen the safety of our transport corridors,” says Mr Volodymyr Shemaev, director of the office of international projects at UZ.

“I hope that cooperation with CPK will bring us closer to the construction of the first high-speed line to European gauge and will be an important step towards Ukraine’s integration with the EU.”

On January 18 UZ restored international passenger services on the 1520mm-gauge route from Rakhiv to Valea-Viseului in Romania, following completion of work by infrastructure manager CFR Infrastructure to upgrade the Romanian section of the line.

Services now run twice a day on the line, having been absent for 15 years.

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