Thursday, December 7, 2023

Iran-Iraq Railway to Connect China to Mediterranean: VP

Iran’s First Vice-President Es’haq Jahangiri says the construction of the railway between Iran’s Shalamcheh and Iraq’s Basra will facilitate transit of cargos from China to the Mediterranean.

connects Shalamcheh in Khuzestan province in south-western Iran to Iraq’s Basra is very important to both neighbouring countries.

“If it is constructed quickly, it will turn into one of the world’s biggest railways,” Jahangiri noted on Saturday on the sidelines of a ceremony to inaugurate a number of construction projects at Abadan International Airport in Khuzestan province, south-west of Iran.

He said the railway can facilitate the transfer of goods from China to the Mediterranean with train, and will turn into one of the world’s transit hubs.
The vice-president, however, noted that part of the railway that connects Iraq to Syria needs to be reconstructed.

Iran had earlier linked its railway network to western Afghanistan through a joint project which was inaugurated in December 2020.

The 225-km railroad project, that connects Iran’s Khaf to Afghanistan’s Herat, includes four phases that are currently under construction. About 78 km of the project, which includes two phases, is on Iran’s soil and the rest in Afghanistan.

The construction of the project started in the fiscal year of 2007-2008. Completion of the project will affect transit facilities in Afghanistan and solve many investors’ and merchants’ problems in the country.

Afghanistan has still to complete the remaining 85 km section of the Khaf-Herat railway line which was inaugurated as far as Rahzanak in its territory.
Officials say work is in progress on the line, which ends at Herat International Airport, the fourth major airport in Afghanistan.

About 2.5 million Afghan migrants reportedly live either legally or without documents in Iran.

The 225 km long railway to Iran has long been touted as the sole viable option to build Afghanistan’s economy, connecting Herat to Mashhad in Iran and on to Turkey.

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