Next year BC will turn its attention to electrifying the Zhlobin – Gomel (86km) and Zhlobin to Kalinkovichi (101km) lines, extending the wires closer to the Ukranian and Russian borders in the southeast of the country.

BC says it aims to cut operating costs on these lines by 26% while increasing average speeds by 25%.

Overall, BC will electrify 387 route-km in its 2011-2015 electrification programme, which also includes the line from Molodechno to the Lithuanian border, closing most of the gap in the wires between Minsk and Vilnius.

At present, only 878km of Belarus's 5537km network is electrified.