The president of Serbia, Aleksandar Vucic, and the minister of foreign affairs and trade of Hungary, Peter Szijjarto, yesterday marked the beginning of the works on the construction of the Novi Sad-Kelebija railway, around 108 kilometers long, within the project of the fast railway Belgrade-Budapest.
The commercial agreement on the modernization and reconstruction of that section, worth EUR 943 million, was signed in 2018 by the company Serbian Railways Infrastructure with the consortium of Chinese companies consisting of China Railway International and China Communications Construction Company – CCCC, and the creditor is the Chinese Exim Bank.
The project of the construction of the Belgrade-Budapest railway is worth around EUR 4 billion, of which the works in Serbia will cost 2 billion, and it is part of the Chinese initiative “Belt and Road”, which has become global.
Peter Szijjarto said that the works on the preparations for the reconstruction of the railway were being stepped up in Hungary as well.
– Last month, we got the permit for the beginning of the construction. According to the plan, the works will take three years, which means that, by 2025, the reconstruction of the railway will be completed – said the Hungarian minister.
At the presentation of the future railway, Vucic said that, by the end of 2024, all the works in Serbia on the fast railway Belgrade-Budapest would be completed, whereas the part through Hungary would be completed by mid-2025.
Vucic said that the railway would enable a much quicker trip between Belgrade and Budapest than even between Budapest and Vienna, even though that route is shorter.
Traffic on the part of the railway that is meant for train speeds of 200 kilometers per hour, from Belgrade to Novi Sad, should begin in March 2022.
The Belgrade-Budapest railway will be around 350 kilometers long, of which 184 kilometers are in the territory of Serbia. The plan is for all the works on the railway to be completed in 2025, and a fast train ride on that route will take two hours and five minutes.
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