(QHA) -

Construction of the bridge across the Kerch Strait, which will connect Crimea to the Russian mainland, must begin in 2015, Prime Minister Dmitriy Medvedev said.

"Design work must be completed next year and construction of the transport crossing of the Kerch Strait must begin: it is a major challenge, but we must do this, to relegate the summer queues for ferries to history," Medvedev said in Moscow on Friday at the 8th international Transport Russia forum.

“The queues are not the only consideration. Crimea needs to feel that it is an integral part of a big and powerful country" he stressed.

"In a short time, we must get a sturdy transportation link up and running. Definite steps toward that have already been made,"- Medvedev said, citing a substantial increase in plane traffic and the organization of a rail-and-ferry route bypassing Ukraine.

"There have been costs, but nonetheless, quite a bit has been done in a short time,"- Prime Minister summed up.