Transport Minister Sergei Frank has reported to President Vladimir Putin that at the beginning of August regular railroad ferry operations would be commenced in the Caspian Sea.
Following the meeting, the minister told journalists that he had informed the president on the course of implementation of his the cabinet's instructions and to develop strategic elements of the Russian transport system.
Frank stressed that the railroad ferry service in the Caspian was established "within a very tight schedule". The city of Makhachkala will be the departure point on the Russian coast.
According to the minister, establishment of this transport system "meant significant strengthening of positions of the Russian Federation in the Caspian Sea from the transportation point of view." The minister reported that in addition to that, by the end of 2002 ferry operations would be commenced to connect St.Petersburg to Kaliningrad (the Russian enclave in the Baltic Sea). This system will use moorings of Baltiisk, a city in the Kaliningrad region. The automobile ferry will allow to provide the region with everything required.
In 2004, the ministry plans to commission a railroad ferry between Kaliningrad and St.Petersburg.