Poland Eyes Canal Construction to Evade Russian Waters

Port of Elblag

Polish authorities have revived plans to build a canal in order to connect the Baltic Sea with the Vistula Lagoon and, thus, bypass Russia’s stretch of coastline.


The endeavour is said to be worth EUR 209 million, and if the proposal by the Polish Ministry of Infrastructure gets the green light, the construction could start in 2015.

Namely, the Polish Ministry is working on a proposal that would see the canal constructed across the Vistula Spit, a narrow piece of land between the Vistula Lagoon and the Gdańsk Bay, Polish radio thenews.pl reports.

At the moment, all sea traffic from the lagoon and the port of Elblag has to pass through Russian waters to reach the Baltic Sea.Poland Eyes Canal Construction to Evade Russian Waters 1

It is estimated that the construction would last around seven years.

The proposal, raised several times since the fall of communism in Poland, would be financed heavily by the EU funds.

Taking into account that Russia has imposed sanctions on agricultural products from the EU, Poland could bring the canal plans to fruition levering on the unfavourable political situation.

2015-2022

Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk, who was last year against the construction of the channel, has changed his mind in the wake of the recent turn of events concerning Ukraine, The Telegraph writes.

Poland has signed a five-year deal with Russia on navigation rights from the lagoon to the sea that expires this year, and there are fears the agreement won’t be extended.

World Maritime News Staff, August 12, 2014

 



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