Over $666m invested for completion of Khaf-Herat railway

December 9, 2020 - 14:49

TEHRAN - Iranian Transport and Urban Development Minister Mohammad Eslami said the government has invested over 28 trillion rials (over $666.6 million) for the completion of the Khaf-Herat railway project which is due to be officially inaugurated tomorrow.

The 222-kilometers-long Khaf-Herat is part of the Iran-Afghanistan rail corridor. The project started in the fiscal year of 2007-2008, connects Iran’s eastern city of Khaf to Afghanistan’s western city of Ghoryan.

According to Eslami the inauguration ceremony will be attended by the presidents of the two countries as well as the two sides’ transport ministers.

The Khaf-Herat railway was mainly implemented by the Islamic Republic of Iran under a tripartite agreement between Iran, Afghanistan, and India, Eslami said, adding: “One of the most successful countries in using the capacities of Iran’s Chabahar port for expanding trade exchanges is Afghanistan.”

The project was implemented in four parts, Iran was in charge of completing three of the mentioned four parts, two of which are in the Iranian territory and the other two are on the Afghan side.

Iran sent its first cargo of exports to Afghanistan last week via the Khaf-Herat railroad as a trial dispatch to detect possible technical problems and issues on that route.

The 500-ton cement cargo from Iran's Khaf city arrived in Ghoryan district of Herat on Wednesday, December 2, indicating that the route was clear for the official inauguration.

Khaf-Herat line is part of the much bigger East-West Railway Corridor project which extends from China to Europe through Iran and Afghanistan.

Iran and Afghanistan have signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with five other countries that are in the way of the East-West corridor and further negotiations are still ongoing in this regard.

In early July, Iranian and Afghan officials held a committee meeting to discuss the completion and inauguration of the mentioned railway.

EF/MA

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