Putin, Levitin discuss development of transport in South Russia

ITAR-TASS News Agency
August 24, 2004 Tuesday 8:28 AM Eastern Time

Putin, Levitin discuss development of transport in South Russia

By Mikhail Petrov


Russian President Vladimir Putin and Transport Minister Igor Levitin
discussed Tuesday the development of transport infrastructure in
southern Russia.

Levitin noted that one the main tasks of the ministry is to harmonise
motor, railway, sea and air transport to reduce expenses in passenger
and cargo traffic.

“Southern Russia accounts for about 30 percent of the volume of
traffic,” Levitin emphasised. Meanwhile, “the transport network is
developed irregularly, he said, noting that it is possible to get to
some cities only with changes. “Our main task is to unify transport
so that people could get to southern Russia from any part of the
country,” the minister emphasised.

Speaking on highways, Levitin stressed that their network is quite
developed, but is not always safe for passenger traffic, as roads are
going in the highlands. “We reconsidered the transport concept in
order to retarget funds and provide for safe travelling of people,”
he said, adding that the ministry is planning to implement plans for
the construction of tunnels quicker.

Among tasks of the ministry and development of seaports “we want to
restore sea shipments, particularly between Ukraine, Armenia, Georgia
and Russia as there is a need but no possibilities for this,” Levitin
pointed out.

The minister also informed the president that he would make a trip in
the Krasnodar territory with governor Alexander Tkachev on Wednesday
in order to inspect all facilities.

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