Today, April 10, marks the beginning of the international two-day event – the Rail Baltica Global Forum 2018 – organized by the joint venture of the three Baltic States RB RAIL AS supported by the project’s national implementing bodies – Rail Baltic Estonia, Eiropas Dzelzceļa līnijas and Rail Baltica statyba. A live video stream will be accessible on both Forum days via www.railbaltica.org/forum.
The Rail Baltica Global Forum 2018 is the key international event of the year for the Rail Baltica project that will discuss its role in the North-Sea – Baltic TEN-T Core Network Corridor, the project’s procurement and financing as well as its implementation from national, regional and the EU perspectives. The event will also facilitate suppliers’ networking.
The first day of the Forum will be devoted to the progress and potential of the Rail Baltica project by introducing a perspective of the Trans-European Transport Network Corridors. During the day, potential post-2020 financing of the EU transport projects and its impact on Rail Baltica will be discussed alongside lessons learned from implementation of various other cross-border projects and the importance of the Rail Baltica project for Finland. The first day of the event will gather high level officials and opinion leaders as well as industry representatives from the Baltic States, Poland, Finland, the EU Commission and Parliament. Participation in the first day of the Forum is by invitations only.
More than 15 speakers from all across Europe will gather on the first day of the Forum to highlight the best ideas, practices and solutions for further implementation of the Rail Baltica Global Project.
The participation in the first day of the Rail Baltica Global Forum 2018 has been confirmed by the Prime Minister of the Republic of Estonia Jüri Ratas, the Minister of Economics and Communications of the Republic of Estonia Kadri Simson, the Minister of Transportation of the Republic of Latvia Uldis Augulis, the Lithuanian Minister of Transport and Communications Rokas Masiulis, the Undersecretary of State of the Ministry of Infrastructure and Construction of the Republic of Poland Andrzej Bittel, and the State Secretary of the Ministry of Enterprise and Innovation of the Kingdom of Sweden Mattias Landgren.
Baiba Rubesa, CEO and Chairperson of the Management Board of RB RAIL AS, will inform about the progress of the Rail Baltica Global Project implementation and provide a snapshot on the Baltic mobility patterns and the vision of the Rail Baltica’s role in future.
Taking into account the project’s global scale as well as the importance of the European Union funding within its implementation, the audience at the event will be addressed by the European Parliament Vice-Chair of the Budget Committee Petri Sarvamaa, who will discuss the expectations of the next EU Multi-Financial Framework, and the Director for Investment, Innovative and Sustainable Transport of DG MOVE of the EU Commission Herald Ruijters, speaking about the CEF Transport Financing Instruments. Peter Berkowitz, the Head of the Smart and Sustainable Growth Unit of DG REGIO, will provide insights into the usage of cohesion funds for transportation projects.
Another aspect of the Rail Baltica project is its freight opportunities. A question why Rail Baltica is important to Finland will be answered by Sabrina Lindström, the Director from Networks Departments of the Ministry of Transport and Communications of Finland. Results of Muuga Terminal Study and the impact of the FinEst Link project on Rail Baltica will be discussed by Meelis Niinepuu, the Partner of Civitta International and Civitta Estonia, and Kari Ruohonen, the Project Director of FinEst Link Project. In addition, a special guest Baozhi Cheng, the Senior Fellow of Shanghai Institute for International Studies (SIIS) of China, will share an international perspective from the Polar Silk Road project and present the opportunities it could offer for the freight industry.
A discussion about the implementation and management of cross-border transport megaprojects will be raised by Tristano Sainati, the Research Fellow from the School of Civil Engineering, University of Leeds (the United Kingdom), Gerhard Troche, the Senior Advisor International Projects of GYSEV Zrt. (Hungary), and Chris Docker, the Director of Strategy and International Development of ATKINS (the United Kingdom), also covering the most important lessons for the Rail Baltica project.
The second day of the Forum, the Industry Suppliers’ Day, on April 11 will be devoted to the procurement topics gathering participants from more than 300 different enterprises representing 24 countries from across the globe. During the second day, the Rail Baltica Design Guidelines will be presented, introducing the main design tenders in 2018 as well as the full Project’s procurement list for this year.