Ukraine restores Moldova rail link, could carry 10 mln tonnes a year

Freight train wagons are seen in the Black sea port of Odessa, Ukraine, November 4, 2016. REUTERS/Valentyn Ogirenko

Aug 22 (Reuters) - Ukraine has restored a rail link to neighbouring Moldova after a 23-year hiatus and the connection could carry 10 million tonnes of freight a year, President Volodymyr Zelenskiy said in a video address on Monday.

Although he did not specify what kinds of goods, Ukraine is keen to find new ways to export millions of tonnes of grain that have been stranded by Russia's invasion. Moldova borders Romania, a member of the European Union.

The 22 km (12 mile) line runs from Berezyne in western Ukraine to Basarabeasca in Moldova.

Separately, Ukrainian Infrastructure Minister Oleksander Kubrakov said on Facebook that the link would provide an alternative route from the Black Sea port of Odesa.

Under a deal the United Nations and Turkey brokered with Russia and Ukraine, ships carrying grain have started leaving Odesa and other ports.

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Reporting by David Ljunggren in Ottawa Editing by Matthew Lewis

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