Season 1 - Episode 1

What is Rail Baltica?

Witness the biggest project in the history of the Baltic States!


Rail Baltica is a new high-speed conventional European standard gauge (1435 mm) double-track electrified and ERTMS-equipped railway line with an operational speed of 234 km/h. It runs from Tallinn through Pärnu, Rīga, Panevėžys, Kaunas and on to the Lithuania-Poland border, with an additional connection from Kaunas to Vilnius.

The vision for the project first appeared during the Pan-European transport conferences in Prague, Crete and Helsinki from 1991–1997, and in 2011 the three Baltic Prime Ministers signed a joint statement and commitment to the project. Check out the project historical timeline to learn more.

The expected core outcome of the project is an 870 km railway line, suitable for both passenger and freight transport. Related railway infrastructure includes:

  • international and regional passenger terminals
  • freight terminals
  • maintenance and rolling stock facilities.

It will be interoperable with the European TEN-T Network and competitive in terms of service offerings when compared with other modes of transport in the region for both passengers and freight.

Rail Baltica will provide a high-speed rail connection between Baltic capitals every 2 hours, with exceptionally fast travel times.

  • Tallinn–Rīga | 1h 42 min
  • Rīga–Vilnius | 1h 52 min
  • Tallinn–Vilnius | 3h 38 min
  • Vilnius–Warsaw | 4h 7 min

The Rail Baltica Global Project is an initiative of great significance for the Baltic States, and at the same time it adds value to Europe as a whole.



The Rail Baltica Global Cost-Benefit Analysis confirms that the project is financially and economically viable. The study reaffirms the project’s economic feasibility and benefits, which amount to 16.2 billion EUR.

Market analysis and forecast modelling illustrate a clear potential, both in terms of passenger and freight flows. This potential is sufficiently balanced — i.e., for passengers there are the core segments of point-to-point and intra-Baltic traffic, while for freight there is a balance between transit to/from Finland, local imports/exports, and intermodal transit to/from the 1520 mm railway system.



Rail Baltica is financed by the three nations — Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania — with co-financing of up to 85% from the European Union under the Connecting Europe Facility (CEF) framework.

The CEF is a key EU funding instrument used to promote growth, jobs and competitiveness through targeted infrastructure investment at a European level.

The total estimated construction cost of the project is approximately 5.8 billion EUR.

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