The symbolic ceremony of launching the cargo terminal construction timed to coincide with the visit to the Czech Republic by Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Kasyanov is to take place in the Moravian town of Bohumin Wednesday. Russian Railways Minister Nikolai Aksyonenko is due to participate in the ceremony. Mikhail Kasyanov and his Czech counterpart Milos Zeman will take part in the ceremony through a TV bridge from Prague. According to the Russian minister, further construction of the Trans-Siberian railway through the Czech Republic will allow to sufficiently increase the flow of cargos delivered from Russia to Europe through the Czech corridor. Russian, Czech, and Ukrainian representatives signed the memorandum to construct the terminal last June. The terminal, whose first stage is to be put into operation in 2003, will become a relay station for cargos delivered by the Trans-Siberian railway from Korea, China, Japan, and other Asian countries to Europe and in the opposite direction. The trains from Russia and Ukraine will proceed without delay on the "broad track" through Poland to the border town of Bohumin to be delivered to other European countries on the European "narrow" track. The Bohumin terminal will be able to receive up to 500,000 containers per year. According to the Railways Ministry press service, the realization of this project, which costs about $300 million, will allow to reduce drastically (by 15-20 days) the time required to deliver cargos from the Asia-Pacific region to Western Europe through Russia.
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