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Sunday 16.06.2019 | Name days: Justīne, Juta
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Lithuania lays symbolic rail on restored Mažeiķi–Reņģe railway line

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Baltic news, News from Latvia, BNN.LV, BNN-NEWS.COM, BNN-NEWS.RULithuania’s Lietuvos geležinkeliai railway company’s director general Mantas Bartuška and Polish oil concern Orlen manager Daniel Obatjek laid a symbolic rail on the restored railway route connecting Orlen Lithuania owned Mažeiķi oil processing plant in Lithuania and Reņģi in Latvia this Tuesday, 14 August.

The aforementioned route was closed and dismantled ten years ago. The two officials also signed an agreement on cooperation between the two companies.

This agreement provides that Lietuvos geležinkeliai will carry cargoes from Orlen subsidiary Orlen Lithuania to Poland from now on. Until now products from Mažeiķi oil processing company have been carried by Lietuvos geležinkeliai only within Lithuania’s territory.

As Lithuania’s Transport Minister Rokas Masiulis said at the press-conference, the laying of the rail on the route has a symbolic meaning, because it proves successful overcoming of previous disagreements between Lietuvos geležinkeliai and Orlen.

«This disagreement and dismantling of the railway line many years ago had not only caused the conflict between Orlen Lithuania and Lietuvos geležinkeliai but had also impacted relations between our countries,» he said.

Mantas Bartuška called this day a historical one. «Today we commence restoration [of the railway] and open a new page. This is a day of partnership. Together we put the foundation for the future,» said the head of Lietuvos geležinkeliai.

Obatjek said the signed agreement will allow the company to carry more cargoes and benefit both Lithuania and Poland.

As announced by Lietuvos geležinkeliai, it is planned to carry several hundred thousand tonnes of Orlen Lithuania products a year in Poland’s direction. The current volume of cargoes is approximately nine million tonnes annually.

Masiulis promised Lithuania’s government would try to find beneficial conditions for inflow of Orlen investments in Lithuania.

At the end of March 2018, Lithuanian government and Orlen, which owns Lithuania’s only crude oil processing company Orlen Lithuania, signed a cooperation declaration. In it, the concern commits to investing in Mažeiķi oil processing plant and not reducing jobs. Lithuania’s government, on the other hand, promises to review public utilities tariffs for the company and consider the possibility of building an oil pipeline to Klaipeda.

On 2 October, European Commission announced application of a EUR 28 million fine on Lithuania’s railway company for limiting competition on the railway freight market, because the decision to liquidate the Mažeiķi–Reņģe railway route, which connects Lithuania and Latvia, was a breach of EU competition regulations.


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