Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev has approved the construction of a new tolled motorway across Russia designed to significantly shorten cargo routes, local media reported. The project is expected to cost around $9.5 billion.
The massive infrastructure project, the Meridian highway, has won the support of the Russian government, Vedomosti business daily said, citing government officials. The highway is set to stretch over 2,000km from the Belarus border to the frontier with Kazakhstan, and it is expected to become part of the fastest trucking route between China and Europe.
While the construction will fully rely on investors' funds without taking money from the Russian budget, the government has pledged to assist with attracting new investment for the project, including from China. However, investors want the government to ensure their minimal revenue of around $550 million, covering not commercial but political risks such as the closure of state borders.