KIEV, September 10. /TASS/. Ukraine’s infrastructure minister Vladimir Omelyan has made a yet another public call for breaking off passenger railway services to and from Russia. He made a supposition along with it that the measure would not affect the financial performance of Ukrainian Railways [Ukrzaliznytsia].
"I am of the opinion that railway communications with Russia should be stopped," he said, declining to specify the dates on which this might take place.
"We’ll definitely tell you as soon as a relevant decision is taken," Omelyan said.
He claimed Ukrzaliznytsia would not suffer financial losses because of the severing of passenger services to and from Russia because the state railway company did not fully meet the demand for transportation of passengers inside the country, particularly on westward-leading routes.
"The eight trains now cruising to destinations in Russia might alleviate the traveling problems for Ukrainian citizens notably, especially for the ones traveling westwards, and we would probably get equally big profits then, or even bigger profits that what we’re earning on the eastward routes now," Omelyan said.
The debates about full severing of railway communications between Ukraine and Russia began quite some time ago. Omelyan spoke about it for the first time back in 2017, saying the Ministry of Infrastructure had started considering the issue.
Ukrzaliznytsia is currently running the Kiev-Moscow-Kiev, Lvov-Moscow-Lvov, Odessa-Moscow-Odessa, Kharkov-Moscow-Kharkov, Khmelnitsky-Moscow-Khmelnitsky, Nikolayev-Moscow-Nikolayev, and Kiev-St Petersburg-Kiev services.
Also crossing the Ukrainian territory are Chisinau-Moscow-Chisinau transit trains operated by Calea Ferata din Moldova [CFM] company.
Kiev-Moscow-Kiev, Kiev-St Petersburg-Kiev and Odessa-Moscow-Odessa services brought in around $ 10 million to Ukrzaliznytsia in 2017.