Rail Baltica is not merely about building a physical railway line. Rather, the physical infrastructure shall serve as an enabler for the emergence of a whole new economic corridor. It will not only set in motion a powerful virtuous circle of transnational regional integration – vividly illustrated, for example, by the outstanding success of the Oresund fixed link infrastructure and its commercialization between Sweden and Denmark – but also integrate the Baltics in the new supply chains of regional, European and global significance.
Rail Baltica is already designed to become a part of the EU TEN-T North Sea – Baltic Core Network Corridor, which links Europe’s largest ports of Rotterdam, Hamburg and Antwerp – through the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany and Poland – with the three Baltic States, further connecting to Finland via the Gulf of Finland short sea shipping connections with a future fixed link possibility between Tallinn and Helsinki. Further northbound extension of this corridor shall pave the way for future connectivity also with the emerging Arctic corridor, especially in light of the lucrative prospects of the alternative Northern Circle maritime route development between Europe and Asia.
Furthermore, the North Sea – Baltic Corridor crosses with the Baltic-Adriatic Corridor in Warsaw, paving the way for new supply chain development between the Baltic and Adriatic seas, connecting the Baltics with the hitherto inadequately accessible Southern European markets. In a similar fashion, Rail Baltica shall strengthen the synergies between North-South and West-East freight flows, creating new transshipment and logistics development opportunities along the Europe and Asia overland trade routes. The new Rail Baltica infrastructure would, therefore, not only put the Baltics firmly on the European rail logistics map, but also create massive opportunities for value creation along this infrastructure with such secondary economic benefits as commercial property development, revitalization of dilapidated urban areas, private spin-off investment, new business formation, technology transfer and innovation, tourism development and other catalytic effects. Rail Baltica aims to promote these effects from the early stages of the project, learning from the key global success stories and benchmarks in this regard