Ukrainian Prime Minister: Kyiv cannot stop rail traffic with Russia
Ukrainian Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman said that Ukraine can not severe the railway communication with Russia. Speaking on the program “Opposition” on Nash TV channel, Groysman explained that Ukraine has obligations to the European Union on the transit of goods. "We simply cannot stop the railway traffic, because we have obligations under the European Union Association Agreement," said Ukrainian Prime Minister.
At the same time, Groysman noted that Ukraine does not intend to restore air traffic with Russia.
Last year, the Ministry of Infrastructure of Ukraine, headed by Volodymyr Omelyan, proposed that the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine stop passenger railway communication with Russia completely. However, he didn't speak about the termination of cargo traffic.
In mid-May, Omelyan said that the passenger trains traffic between Russia and Ukraine will stop by itself because the citizens of Ukraine will stop going to Russia. He explained his position using statistical data, according to which the number of rail trips to the EU in 2018 exceeded the number of trips to Russia.
At the same time in mid-July liga.net news outlet, with reference to the financial indicators of Ukrainian Railways, reported that in the first five months of 2019, the most profitable route for the company was Kyiv—Moscow. Ukrainian Railways earned 117.7 million hryvnias (more than us $4,584 million) from this direction. Train occupancy was 66%. The second most profitable route was the train from Odesa to Moscow (39.2 million hryvnias, or more than $1.5 million).
At the moment there are direct trains from Moscow to Kyiv, Lviv, Odesa, Dnipro, and Donetsk.