Russian Railways is considering the possibility of building a line to the east for the export of Yakut coal, parallel to the BAM and Transsib. This will allow, while ensuring the export of large-scale new volumes of coal from Yakutia, not to additionally load the infrastructure of the Eastern landfill. According to Kommersant’s information, the construction of a line with an end point in the Udskaya Bay of the Sea of Okhotsk was considered as one of the options.
Russian Railways, at the suggestion of Elgaugol, is considering the possibility of building a railway line parallel to BAM and Transsib for the export of coal from Yakutia. Oleg Belozerov, head of Russian Railways, announced this on July 7 at a meeting between the president and members of the government.
“You probably mean Elga now, where nine to ten trains run daily in terms of volume,” RIA Novosti quotes him. “Colleagues suggested building a separate branch to the Pacific Ocean, provided they were given the opportunity export coal.
That is, it will not even be the BAM, and not the Transsib, but one more new line higher, the third parallel, towards the Pacific Ocean. We are also considering this option together with them, we will offer it additionally to the government in order to expand these capacities as well ”.
“If it is expedient, do that too,” Vladimir Putin replied. “But something needs to be done, you cannot just sit.”
The largest coal companies operating in Yakutia – Albert Avdolyan’s Elgaugol and Kolmar – intend to significantly increase coal production and export, while railway exits for exporting these volumes for export were not provided for in the basic planning documents for the development of the Eastern landfill. The cost of these outputs in the model, where they merge with the BAM (and in a number of variants go to the Transsib), was estimated at 350-700 billion rubles. depending on whether diesel traction or electrified tracks will be chosen. On March 2, the President got to work out ways of financing them, in particular, from the funds of the NWF, for which Russian Railways has already submitted an application (see Kommersant on March 3 and May 24). At the same time, the possibility of financing them from the investment tariff was also considered (see Kommersant dated June 4).
The construction of a separate line to the east, connecting Eastern Siberia and Yakutia with the coast, was considered at the end of the 19th century, and then in the second half of the 20th century. In particular, the project of the Lensko-Kamchatskaya main line to Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky assumed the possibility of building a branch from Ust-Yudoma to the south to Chumikan and further up to the connection with the BAM, but the project was never implemented.
At the same time, Russian Railways is working on other routes to the Pacific coast, bypassing the BAM and Transsib. In particular, according to Kommersant’s information, at the expert council of Russian Railways in April, among the works for this year, a preliminary justification of investments in the construction of the Nizhny Bestyakh-Magadan line was considered.