News ID: 275392
Published: 0344 GMT October 11, 2020

Iran, Afghanistan to connect railway networks soon: Minister

Iran, Afghanistan to connect railway networks soon: Minister

Iranian Roads and Urban Development Minister Mohammad Eslami announced on Sunday that by opening the Khaf-Herat railway, the railway networks of the two countries will be connected next (Iranian) month (October 22-November 20).

Talking on the sidelines of Self-Sufficiency in Rail Industry in Tehran, the minister added that the four provinces of Ardebil, Kurdestan, North Khorasan and Chaharmahal and Bakhtiari will also join the national railway network by September 2021, ILNA reported.

He continued: “One of the most important railway routes in our country is the North-South Corridor, which is the largest railway project in the country.”

Since last year, we have accelerated the use of domestic products with special care, Eslami said, adding that during the spread of the coronavirus, we added new cars to the railway fleet.

The Khaf-Herat railway will be 130km long, of which 70km is inside Iranian territory, and 60km is inside Afghan territory.

With the completion of this project, for the first time, Afghanistan can take advantage of a railway which provides access to Turkey and Europe, via Iran’s ports in the Persian Gulf.

The project was started in April 2007 with Iran’s aid at a cost of $75 million and was due to be finished in 2009, but was delayed.

Completion of the project will increase transit opportunities in Afghanistan and is intended to solve many investors’ and merchants’ problems.

“The Khaf railway project will help connect Herat to the entire world and develop our export ability,” said Abdul Latif Qanawizyan, the deputy head of Herat Chamber of Commerce and Industries on October 6.

Iranian officials have said that the project will also help Afghanistan to get easy access to Iranian ports at Chabahar and Bandar Abbas.

The development takes place as security threats still remain high against the project in Ghoryan district.

The Herat-Khaf railway is the largest joint infrastructural project between Iran and Afghanistan.



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