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A Chinese construction company and a private investment fund may be involved in construction of a transport corridor to Crimea across the Kerch Strait at the cost of $ 1.2-3 billion with some part of the project to be invested in yuan, Kommersant daily learnt.
This is primarily a political step which shows build-up of relations between Moscow and Beijing amid Western sanctions and China may also receive access to other major projects in the region, the daily sources said. But, in the view of experts, it will be difficult for Russian companies to participate in infrastructure projects in Crimea after Chinese companies enter the market.
The Transport Ministry prepares to conclude with Chinese companies a memorandum on building a transport corridor across the Kerch Strait which will connect southern Russia’s Krasnodar Territory and Crimea, sources said to the daily. A technical blueprint of the project is not approved yet, as this may be a combined motor-railway bridge or a bridge and an underwater tunnel. The memorandum may be signed during President Vladimir Putin’s visit to China in the second half of May, the daily sources said. China International Fund Ltd (CIF) is expected to fund the project and China Railway Construction Corporation (CRCC) will build it.
CIF positions itself as a private company which funds infrastructure projects, particularly major projects in Angola and Guinea. CIF does not disclose its financial results. State-run CRCC, one of largest construction companies in the world, builds railways and highways, bridges and tunnels. Along with China the company implements projects in Libya and Saudi Arabia. CRCC revenues reached $93.6 billion and its net profit - $1.6 billion in 2013.