China allocates $96mn for Sino-Russian Amur Rail Bridge

A railway bridge over River Amur in Khabarovsk. (RIA Novosti/Vyacheslav Reutov)
The Heilongjiang branch of the Export-Import Bank of China has allocated over $96.5 million to construct the Chinese section of the Sino-Russian railway bridge. The first railway bridge over the Amur River should cut transportation times and boost trade.

READ MORE: China and Russia to increase trade to $100bn in 2015

“The Exim Bank has conducted an inspection of the construction site, determined the demand for financing and issued a loan of 400 million yuan for the project and a loan of 200 million yuan to the contractor of the fourth engineering company of China Railway,” the Applied Economics Association of the Heilongjiang province told Interfax on Tuesday.

The 2,215-meter bridge will link the city of Tongjiang in Heilongjiang Province with Nizhneleninskoye in Russia’s Jewish Autonomous Region.

A project of the Russian-Chinese Investment Fund, it will be able to handle 21 million tons of cargo traffic annually. China has already invested about $153.7 million in the project with its total investment expected to be $425 million. The new route will reduce the distance to customers by about 700 kilometers compared to other rail routes.

READ MORE: Russia and China to construct first rail bridge across Amur River

Russia and China have agreed to build the first cross-border rail bridge over the Amur River by 2016. The two countries are expected to boost their bilateral trade to $100 billion in 2015.

During his visit to Shanghai last year Russian President Vladimir Putin said Heilongjiang province accounts for about a quarter of China’s total trade with Russia. Trade between the Chinese province and Russia exceeded $23 billion last year. Heilongjiang is planning to invest $1 billion in Russia by the end of 2015, and $2 billion by 2020.