The Infrastructure Ministry of Ukraine has obtained consent of Chinese partners to reformat the Air Express project to build a rail link between Kyiv city and the Boryspil International Airport.
The press service of the ministry reported that the proposals to reformat the project were presented to a Chinese delegation headed by Chinese Ambassador to Ukraine Zhang Xiyun.
Infrastructure Minister Andriy Pyvovarsky said that the necessity to reformat the project had appeared due to the radical change of the geopolitical and economic situation in Ukraine.
"Now the issue of the largest efficiency of using the resources is the most important. When the [Air Express] project appeared, the Boryspil airport was actively developing, and the Kyiv city and region's potential was enough to justify the need in the project. However, today it would be unfeasible international its initial form. It is would be better for Ukraine to return funds provided for construction or change the focus," the minister said.
In turn, acting Board Chairman of Ukrzaliznytsia Oleksandr Zavhorodniy said that, taking into account the social importance and the necessity to develop transport connection between the Boryspil airport and Kyiv, it is proposed to implement the light version of the Air Express with the simplified construction scheme.
"Cutting the term and the cost of the project, we would be able to release a part of credit funds to electrify railway sections in eastern Ukraine that would bring transport flows to the airport," he said.
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Executive Director of the China Machinery Engineering Corporation Sun Bai said that the corporation is ready to support the changes proposed by Ukrzaliznytsia, although the final decision will be made by the Chinese government. Chinese specialists are to study the new project in details and discuss it with Ukrainian railway specialists. The experts of the two countries are to draw up new technical documents, amend the budget and construction plans. Then the project is to be defended at the Chinese government.
Ambassador Xiyun supported the action plan.
The Air Express national project is comprised of the construction of a passenger rail link between Kyiv and Boryspil International Airport and the related construction of other infrastructure objects in Kyiv region. It is aimed at ensuring the development of transport infrastructure, strengthening the competitive position of Ukrainian airlines, and raising the investment and tourist attractiveness of the country. Since June 2015, the project has been under the management of the Ministry of Infrastructure.