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Oct 21, 2019

Russian Railways and Serbia sign agreement on joint implementation of project to modernise Belgrade – Vrbnica – border railway line with Montenegro (Bar)

Oleg Belozerov, Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of the Board of Russian Railways, and Zorana Mihajlović, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Construction, Transport and Infrastructure of the Republic of Serbia, have signed an agreement on the joint implementation of a project to modernise the railway line from Belgrade to Bar on the border with Montenegro via Vrbnica and the section between Valjevo and the border with Montenegro.

The signing took place during a visit of Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev to Belgrade on 19 October 2019.

The parties stressed their firm commitment to actively developing mutually beneficial cooperation on railway projects and expressed their intention to sign a new contract.

Also within the framework of the Intergovernmental Agreement on Granting the Government of the Republic of Serbia a State Export Loan, an additional agreement was signed today to the contract concluded on 17 January 2019 between RZD International LLC, a subsidiary of Russian Railways which implements the RZD Holding’s international foreign infrastructure, and Serbian Railways Infrastructure JSC. This additional agreement is for the modernisation and reconstruction of signalling, centralisation and blocking systems, communications and telecommunications with the creation of a Unified Control Centre for Train Traffic Management in the Republic of Serbia.

"Today, two important documents have been signed which take our cooperation to a new level. We are ready to start working actively on a new major project. And in addition to the construction side which already exists, we have added to the arsenal of our cooperation an innovative technological component, as well as modern software complexes. I am talking about joint work on the construction of a Unified Control Centre for Train Traffic Management," said Oleg Belozerov.

Since 2014, Russian Railways has modernised and reconstructed a total of more than 200 kilometres of railway infrastructure in different regions of Serbia. Work is currently underway on the construction of the Čortanovci Tunnel and viaduct in the Danube River floodplain on the Stara Pazova - Novi Sad section of the Belgrade - Budapest line.

Contract Number 1 worth $940 million between Russian Railways International LLC and Serbian Railways was signed on 23 May 2013.

The contract includes the construction and electrification of a 15-km second track on the Belgrade - Pančevo railway line, the reconstruction of six sections of the pan-European corridor with a total length of 112 km, the reconstruction of the existing track and the construction of a second new track along the 40.4 km stretch of the Stara Pazov - Novi Sad railway line, and the reconstruction of the 77.6-km section of the Belgrade - Bar railway line, as well as the delivery of Russian-made diesel trains.

Contract Number 2 totalling EUR230 million was signed by RZD International LLC and Serbian Railways Infrastructure JSC on 17 January 2019.

The document provides for the completion of work and the delivery of materials as part of the second phase of reconstructing, modernising and constructing a twin-track railway line capable of handling a speed of 200 kph on the 40.44-km stretch of the Stara Pazov - Novi Sad section on the Belgrade - Budapest line. In particular, work will be carried out on the construction of electrical infrastructure and the architectural, construction, electrical power and related facilities, work on the regulation of watercourses and the arrangement of the strip land drain.

Under the terms of the contract, RZD International LLC will also develop a project to reconstruct and modernise the 210-km stretch from Valjevo to the state border with Montenegro via Vrbnica with the aim of carrying out further work.

In addition, RZD International LLC will design and build a unified train control centre in the Republic of Serbia. According to expert estimates, the creation of such a centre will take about three years.

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