Iran ready to slash Silk Road rail transit time

TEHRAN, May 09 (MNA) – Railway official Hossein Ashouri has announced Iran’s readiness to reduce the running time of the trains travelling along the Silk Road.

“The Islamic Republic of Iran Railways is eager to reduce train travel times from the current 14 to 12 days and we hope that goods transit between the two countries will further grow in near future,” Deputy Managing Director of Iranian Railway Hossein Ashouri told a meeting in Tehran attended by senior city officials and businessmen of China’s Yiwu as well as the representative of the East Asian country’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

The official described the country’s corridors, ports and active rail terminals adding “once the missing links in borders of Afghanistan and Iraq are constructed, Iran would turn into the best corridor for cargo transit to these states.”

Ashouri further asserted “rail freight tariff rates remained constant in Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan and Iran over the years 2015 and 2016 mainly to encourage more merchants to use more of rail transit.”

He highlighted that the Iranian Railway Company plans to launch regular Iran-China train travels fortnightly in order to deploy Iranian goods to Central Asian countries as well as to China.

Later at the meeting, the head of the Chinese delegation described his city’s plans to launch rail transit to Asian and European countries voicing readiness to run train trips every fifteen days rather than the current once in a month.

The first cargo train from China arrived in Tehran on February 15 after covering a distance of almost 10,000 kilometers.

The train had left China from the trading hub of Yiwu in the northwestern province of Xinjiang on 29 January.

The project was part of a Chinese initiative to revive the ancient Silk Road through which traders traveled from Europe to East Asia.





News Code 116430


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