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Vneshtorgbank looks to partake in lending for building Baltic Sea ferry line

15 April 2002

 Vneshtorgbank (VTB) is interested in lending money for the building of a ferry service on the Baltic Sea that would link Russian and German ports, chairman of the VTB board of executives Yuri Ponomarev told Interfax on Wednesday. He was attending the Russian-German forum `Petersburg Dialog` initiated by Russian President Vladimir Putin and German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder.

 We are prepared to act as bank-operator and organizer of the lending for building a ferry service. This proposal has already been submitted to the governments of Russia and Germany, Ponomarev said. This transportation project envisions several stages and could be expanded, he said. The first chunk of capital investment is estimated at $100 million.

 We are now engaged in consultations with a number of German banks about their possible participation in financing the project, Ponomarev said. He also expressed the hope that the implementation of the ferry project will to a large degree contribute to the businesslike and friendly atmosphere established during the course of the high-level Russian-German inter-governmental consultations held in Weimar April 9-10.

 I think that our proposal is in the channel of those ideas that were aired today [April 10] by the leaders of Russia and Germany, Ponomarev said.

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