Turkmenistan to build railway section up to Iran independently
Turkmenistan, Ashgabat, Sept. 8 / Trend H. Hasanov /
Turkmen President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov has agreed to a proposal on the advisable termination of the relevant contract concluded with Pars Energy company (Iran) and instructed to implement the project independently, the Turkmen government said on Saturday.
This issue was touched upon at the meeting of the Cabinet of Ministers, in particular, when the matter rested in the transnational railway "North-South", which is being constructed jointly with Kazakhstan and Iran.
According to the information, a contract for the Bereket Etrek railway construction was signed with this Iranian company in January 2010 which was to be completed in December last year.
"However, the operations were not completed by the deadline despite the Turkmen side fulfilled its partnership commitments by assisting Pars Energy," a statement said.
Therefore, proceeding from the consultations and negotiations with official Tehran, a proposal was made to terminate the contract with this company on a voluntary bilateral basis and make all the appropriate procedures in accordance with the generally accepted norms of international law.
"The advisability was stressed for Turkmenistan to complete the railway construction up to the Turkmen-Iranian border independently," the government report said.
The president regretted that the Iranian company Pars Energy fails to complete the planned construction due to some economic reasons.
Stressing that Turkmenistan will have to build this section independently, the president instructed to prepare all the necessary documents and immediately begin construction operations.
It was also stressed that the "North-South" construction is of great importance not only for Turkmenistan, but for the region as a whole.
The president said that transporting the goods via the railway will be economically beneficial for both countries in terms of shipping cost.
The project implementation will open the way to the Central Asia and the Persian Gulf to Europe and Asia. Similar opportunity will appear to transit the goods from the countries in South and South-East Asia, the Indian Ocean to the North and East Europe - through Iran, Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan and Russia.
This way is three times shorter than the route through the Suez Canal. The new railway will play a significant role in creating a new social infrastructure of desert regions in the Caspian region and the northern regions - from Bereket to the border with Kazakhstan.
According to the preliminary estimates, up to 3 - 5 million tons per year will be initially transported through "North-South" railway. The volumes will increase to 10 - 12 million tons.