Putin Calls For High-Speed Siberian Railway

President Vladimir Putin on Wednesday called for the $28 billion high-speed Moscow-Kazan railway to be extended to the Siberian city of Krasnoyarsk.

The 800-kilometer line that is currently under construction is expected to cut travel time from Russia's capital to the biggest city in the Volga republic of Tatarstan from 11 1/2 to just 3 1/2 hours.

But that line, Putin said, is an initial step that could become "a pilot section of a future route that will link the Volga and Ural regions."

According to state railroad monopoly Russian Railways, the Moscow-Kazan line is expected to carry 7.4 million passengers annually by 2019.

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