Last week, the Mayor of Panevežys Rytis Račkauskas met Mark Gaskell,CEO of British business investment and consulting company Equity & Grant; Michael Whitehouse,Chairman of British railway company Vintage Trains; and Vismantas Užalinskas,Director of Aukštaitijos siaurasis geležinkelis (Narrow gauge railway of Aukštaitija). The meeting, which took place in Panevėžys, Lithuania, where the narrow gauge line is located, was set up to discuss British intentions to invest in the Narrow gauge line of Aukštaitija.
According to Mr Užalinskas, Panevėžys has a significant infrastructure and has one of the world's largest narrow gauge railway depots. In the near future, the Municipality of Panevėžys hopes to become a partial stakeholder of the narrow gauge line.
At this time, the potential of the line is not fully exploited, so the development of the narrow gauge railway would be beneficial for the county, and also for Lithuania.
The foreigner’s visit was a result of a presentation organised by representatives of the Narrow gauge railway of Aukštaitijatwo years ago in Ventspils, Latvia.
Equity&Grant helps companies to invest in Central, Northern and Eastern European countries. It has been working in Lithuania for 10 years. Vintage Trains aims to popularise historic railway tourism services, including organising tours by vintage steam trains, and also operates the Tyseley Locomotive Works in Birmingham, England.
After a visit to the Municipality, the potential investors visited the narrow gauge railway, examined the infrastructure, and promised to present their conclusions and proposals.