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RB Rain CEO: shareholders’ disagreements could delay Rail Baltica’s realization

Baiba Rubesa/twitter.com.
Disagreements among shareholders could impede successful realization of Rail Baltica project and use of EU funding, said RB Rail CEO Baiba Rubesa in an interview to 900 seconds programme of LNT.

She refrained from commenting on the vote of Lithuania and Estonian shareholders in favour of her dismissal. She only mentioned that she was not present at the meeting when the vote took place.

Rubesa did mention that she encounters the desire and interests of Baltic shareholders to influence decision-making processes very often. As one of the example of this, Rubesa mentioned shareholders’ desire to gain information regarding specifications of certain procurements, which is a blatant violation.

She emphasized that shareholders have to work in a constructive and organized manner in order to avoid delaying the project worth more than EUR 5 billion. Rubesa reminded that EU provides 85% of funding and each participating country provides 5%. Delays with the project’s realization could result in reduced funding for the EU.

At the same time, the head of RB Rail mentioned that the project’s realization is going as planned – the deadline of 2026 will be reached. She allowed that some deviations from established terms are possible. «Delays are not uncommon for cross-border projects in the Europe. Still, I doubt any delay with RB Rail will be longer than one or two years,» said Rubesa.

She also mentioned there are plans to procure railway construction of approximately 500 km of new rails.

On 1 February, Estonian and Lithuanian shareholders voted in favour of Rubesa’s dismissal. Latvia’s representative, manager of European Railway Lines Andris Linužs, abstained in the vote. This topic is planned to be discussed in more detail at the next meeting of RB Council, which is scheduled for 22 March.

Transport Minister Uldis Augulis mentioned that the decision in regards to the company’s board chairman post is for the council to make.

Rubesa was appointed as the head of RB Rail in October 2015. Her term ends in October 2018.


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