The Government of Canada and the Canadian Railway Industry to provide rail assistance to Ukraine

News release

September 28, 2022       Montréal, Quebec             Transport Canada 

The war in Ukraine has had devastating impacts on its people, transportation infrastructure and critical trade routes for a range of goods, affecting the safety, security, and prosperity of Ukrainian citizens.

Today, during the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO)’s 41st Assembly, the Minister of Transport, the Honourable Omar Alghabra, met with the Minister of Infrastructure of Ukraine, the Ambassador of Ukraine and officials from the Railway Association of Canada (RAC), to identify areas of collaborative rail assistance to Ukraine.  

Following this discussion, the Government of Canada, the Government of Ukraine, Ukraine’s National Railway, Ukraliznytsia, and RAC, on behalf of Canadian railways including CP, and CN established a working group to support the reconstruction of Ukrainian transportation infrastructure and the resiliency of Ukraine’s rail infrastructure.  

Key objectives of the working group include: 

·         Supporting the rebuild of rail sector infrastructure;
·         Maximizing rail capacity;
·         Working with the Canadian rail industry to implement core objectives and expertise;
·         Analyzing challenges to the movement of Ukrainian export-ready commodities by rail; and
·         Attempting to identify practical solutions with government and industry allies. 

Based on the significant experience and expertise of CP, CN and other Canadian railways in transporting large quantities of commodities and operating a world-class freight rail system, the railways will provide input, guidance and recommendations in support of transportation-specific issues.


“As a key ally and partner to the Ukrainian reconstruction efforts, the Government of Canada will leverage broader industry and supply chain partnerships that can help inform decisions on freight commodity movements by rail. Together with our industry partners, we will ensure the continued movement of people and crucial commodities and products that are vital to supporting the wellness and livelihoods of Ukrainians.”

The Honourable Omar Alghabra
Minister of Transport

“Canada’s railways deliver reliably over more than 42,000 kilometres of track -- as they have through two world wars and other major world events since Confederation. Overcoming logistical and other challenges, Canadian railroaders never shy away from stepping up in times of need and working together for the good of all. Our member railways have deep talent pools and a breadth of expertise to bring to bear in helping Ukrainians get food, energy, and other goods to market at this incredibly difficult time.”

Marc Brazeau
President and CEO, Railway Association of Canada

Quick facts

  • RAC represents approximately 60 freight and passenger railway companies, including a growing number of industrial railways and railway supply companies. RAC will leverage available resources and knowledge within the rail sector.

  • ICAO is a United Nations (UN) specialized agency that works with its 193 Member States to set and audit safety, security, emissions, navigation, and facilitation standards to shape and improve international air operations.

  • As Host Country, Canada works to provide the necessary support to ICAO and its diplomatic community. In doing so, Canada works closely with the City of Montréal, the Province of Québec and the Secretariat of ICAO to ensure the organization continues to thrive in Montréal.

  • The ICAO Assembly is the Organization’s sovereign body. It meets at least once every three years in Montréal and is convened by ICAO’s governing body, the Council. The Assembly establishes ICAO’s priorities for the upcoming three years.

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Nadine Ramadan
Press Secretary and Communications Advisor 
Office of the Honourable Omar Alghabra
Minister of Transport, Ottawa
(613) 290-8656  

Media Relations 
Transport Canada, Ottawa 

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