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SAINT PETERSBURG, April 28. /TASS/. Siemens is interested in the development project of the Moscow-Kazan high-speed railway, Siemens President for Russia and Central Asia Dietrich Muller told journalists Tuesday.
"We are interested in the Moscow-Kazan high-speed railway project. We are particularly interested in trains’ delivery on the basis of local production together with Sinara," he said, adding that "the company would be interested in co-developing."
"We are at the very beginning of the project and it is possible that we will participate in the project as a contractor," Muller said.
As TASS reported earlier, Russian Railways First Vice-President Alexander Misharin said that the construction of the high-speed rail Moscow-Kazan would begin in 2016. "We have announced a design competition, and we will open the envelopes on April 22, and announce the winners before the end of the month. The first stage of the design process is set to end in March of next year, and all the design work should be completed in September of next year. And we should start construction next year as well," Misharin said. According to him, it would be technically possible to build and implement the railway for consistent operation in 2020. He noted that the route has already been approved by the regions, and but the official map will be made public only after the design in completed.
Earlier in April, Russian Railways CEO Vladimir Yakunin told TASS that the Russian Railway is looking into the proposal by China to invest 300 bln rubles ($5.7 bln) into the Moscow-Kazan high speed railway. "They expressed their intent. But there is nothing to discuss yet, there is neither format nor model," Yakunin said when asked about the offer made by the Chinese investors to put in 250 bln rubles ($4.7 bln) worth of credits into the construction and contribute 52 bln rubles ($995.8 mln) into the SPV-company.
Yakunin did not clarify whether the amount of investment from the Chinese side is enough to see the project to fruition though he added that the total amount for the high speed railway construction almost tops 900 billion rubles ($17.2 bln) 1.068 trillion rubles ($20.4 bln) with railroad infrastructure and rolling stock included.
At that time, Misharin said that the progress payment with China for the construction of the high speed railway may be made in rubles, dollars or yuan.
The Moscow-Kazan railroad may later be extended to China, and become the high-speed rail Moscow-Beijing, connecting the two countries across Kazakhstan. The transport scheme could become part of the route of a new Silk Road project, which is aimed at tying China with the European and Middle Eastern markets.
The Sino-Russian consortium becomes the only bidder for Moscow - Kazan High Speed Railway engineering, Russian Railways said on Friday in its tender documentation posted on the website.
"The bid was received by the deadline set forth in the tender documentation from OAO Mosgiprotrans - the representative of the bidder with several legal entities acting on its side, that is, Mosgiprotrans, Nizhegorodmetroproekt [Russian design institutes - TASS], and China Railway Eryuan Engineering Group Co. Ltd.," Russian Railways said.
The Moscow-Kazan High Speed Railway’s total length will stand at around 770 kilometers. Trains may go at a speed of 350-400 kilometers per hour, and the time en route between the two cities could be 3-3.5 hours against the current 14 hours.