Annual rail transit up 29% despite pandemic

April 24, 2021 - 13:17

TEHRAN - Transit of goods through Iran’s railway network rose 29 percent during the previous Iranian calendar year (ended on March 20) despite the limitations created by the coronavirus pandemic, the head of the Islamic Republic of Iran Railways (known as RAI), announced.

Speaking at the 36th Conference of the Managers of Organization for Cooperation of Railways (OSJD) which was held virtually during April 19-23, Saeid Rasouli said: “In the past year, the Railways of the Islamic Republic of Iran took significant positive steps to develop cooperation with the railways of the neighboring counties and regional railways, and to continue cooperating with international railway organizations, despite the pandemic and the intensification of sanctions.”

Mentioning a four-month blockade of borders with neighboring countries due to the coronavirus pandemic in the previous year, Rasouli said: “We created the conditions for rail transport and trade with neighboring countries to continue according to international health protocols and consequently witnessed a significant increase in rail transport despite the blockades.”

According to the official, Iranian exports through the country’s railway also increased by five percent in the previous year.

At the railway border with Turkey, with the increase and equipping of the fleet and the development of the railway infrastructure, the volume of transport reached more than 650,000 tons, which has been the highest record for the last 10 years, he said.

The increase in the country’s rail transit has been achieved when according to Mostafa Ayati, the director-general of IRICA’s Transit Bureau, transit of commodities through Iran was expected to fall 30 percent in the previous calendar year.

The Organization for Cooperation of Railways was established as the equivalent of the International Union of Railways (UIC) to create and improve the coordination of international rail transport.

This organization is comprised of 29 active members, eight supervisory members, and 40 institutions and companies as affiliated members. RAI is considered one of the active members of the organization.


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