Passenger numbers between Russia and Finland reaches record high in 2019
Oleg Belozorov, Chairman of the Board of Russian Railways, and Ville Skinnari, the Minister of International Development and Foreign Trade of Finland, have discussed cooperation between Russia and Finland in the railway sector. The two men met in Moscow on 16 January 2020.
The parties expressed satisfaction with the results of cooperation and noted the record numbers of passengers travelling between Russia and Finland, with almost 640,000 going by rail in 2019, 16% more than a year earlier. In particular, 557,300 passengers used Allegro trains running between between St. Petersburg and Helsinki, 15.7% more compared to 2018, including 81,600 passengers who travelled on the Leo Tolstoy braded train and additional trains between Moscow and Helsinki, 18.6% up on the figure for 2018.
At the same time, Oleg Belozorov said that there remained significant potential for further growth in these indicators, including by ensuring that the trains run in strict accordance with the timetable.
Ville Skinnari stressed that Finland was focused on maintaining the railway infrastructure, with necessary repairs under way and expected to be completed by the end of 2020.
Rail freight was also discussed at the meeting. The Finnish side expressed great interest in shipping transit goods from the Nordic countries to the Asia-Pacific countries via Russia’s railway network while also praising the achievements of Russian Railways in organising transit freight. The Finns also stressed the importance of applying advanced digital technologies in the railway sector, including the freight transport using paperless technology.
Environmental issues were also raised during the conversation. The parties noted that Russian and Finnish railways paid special attention to the energy efficiency of their operations and were ready to share their experience in the application of environmentally friendly technologies in rail transport.