A joint venture between China and Russia has completed the construction of the first railway bridge linking the two countries, Chinese media reported today.
The 7.19-kilometer bridge, which began construction in 2014, will link the cities of Tongjiang, in northeastern China, and Nizhneleninskoye, in eastern Russia.
The works faced problems, such as the different gauges of the two countries – 1,435 millimeters for the Chinese and 1,520 for the Russian – and the adverse weather conditions at the site in winter.
The bridge will shorten the route between Heilongjiang, China’s northernmost province, and Moscow by 809 kilometers, compared to current rail links.
State media noted that further integration with Russia would benefit the revitalization of northeast China, whose three regions – Heilongjiang, Jilin, and Liaoning – have seen anemic economic growth in recent years.
China and Russia share a border of more than 4,000 kilometers, which has been closed to the vast majority of travelers – not goods – since last year as a result of the covid-19 pandemic.
The border separates two demographically very different territories: the Russian Far East, with 6.2 million inhabitants, and the North East of China, where more than 100 million people live.
Source: with Agencies