Rasht-Astara railroad to be completed in three years: Report

By finalizing an agreement between Tehran and Moscow, the Rasht-Astara railroad will be completed in three years with a total credit of €800 million.

According to a report by IRNA on Friday, as a part of the International North-South Transport Corridor (INSTC), the railroad will help boost the trade between Caucasian states, Central Asian countries, and Europeans.

By constructing the 162km Rasht-Astara railroad section, the INSTC will be completed in Iran which connects Astara in northern Iran to the southern city of Bandar Abbas.

Russia’s State Council Secretary Igor Levitin visited the railroad project in northern Iran amid talks between the two countries to secure the funding needed to complete the key North-South transportation link.

Images published in local media on Wednesday showed Levitin, who is a senior aide to Russian President Vladimir Putin, while conducting an aerial inspection of the Rasht-Astara rail project along the Caspian Sea coast.

The top Iranian government official in Gilan Province and officials from Iran’s Ministry of Roads and Urban Development were accompanying Levitin in the visit which came amid final stages of talks between Iran and Russia to secure the massive funding needed to finish the railroad line.

Once finished, the Rasht-Astara railroad will reduce the time needed to transport cargo from Helsinki in Finland via Russia to Iran’s southern ports on the Persian Gulf and on the Sea of Oman by 20 days.