Ukraine-Russia Bridge Across The Kerch Strait

Ukrainian President Leonid Kuchma has largely backed the idea of constructing a 7-km bridge Ukraine-Russia linking the Crimea and the Kuban region across the Kerch Strait, reported the Crimean authorities on Monday. The construction of the multi-functional transport passage across the Kerch Strait is envisaged in the 1998-2000 inter-regional treaties on large-scale cooperation between the Autonomous Republic of Crimea /Ukraine/, Moscow and the Krasnodar Territory /Russia/, and in the new memorandum concluded on April 28, 2001 in Kerch. Leonid Kuchma has approved the idea as a whole and instructed the Crimean government to come up with an official address formulating the sides' intentions so that they could draft the project documents jointly with Ukraine's experts. Earlier, Moscow Mayor Yuri Luzhkov said that by now Russian experts had already drafted nine various construction projects of the Kerch crossing in the form of railway, highway, bridges and tunnels, provided with pipelines for transporting water and energy resources. The projects' cost is estimated at the level of 400 million -1.2 billion dollars. Fifty-one percent of shares belong to the Moscow government responsible for attracting investments, with the rest 49 % of shares equally distributed between the Crimea and the Krasnodar Territory.

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