Russia to Invest $15.1M for Volga-Caspian Shipping Canal Dredging

The Russian government is planning to invest approximately $15.1 million (RUB 1 billion) for the dredging and clearing of the bed operations that will be conducted along the Volga-Caspian Shipping Canal in 2016.

The announcement was made by the Astrakhan Region Governor Alexander Zhilkin who said that in 2015 around $9.7 million was spent for the VCSC dredging operations.

During the maintenance dredging works over 17 million cbm of materials have been excavated from the canal. The issue of development of the inland waterways of the Russian Federation is essential to achieve sustainable social and economic development of the country,” Zhilkin reported.

“To systematically solve the water shortage problem, we need to identify a single “master” of the Volga (as an example, this could be the Ministry of Natural Resources), to adopt a federal target program for ecological rehabilitation of this unique water basin,” added Zhilkin.

A meeting of the State Council on “The Development of Inland Waterways in the Russian Federation” has been slated for August 2016.

Volga-Caspian Canal is a unified deepwater artery linking waterways of the Volga River and the Caspian Sea. Its total length, including the fluvial and marine parts is 188 km.

Dredging of the VCSC is performed annually in accordance with the project of maintenance dredging on the 0-188-km stretch of Volga-Caspian Shipping Canal for the period until 2018 along with the development of environmental measures.