China increases freight traffic to Iran through Turkmenistan

Business Materials 16 November 2018 14:37 (UTC +04:00)

Ashgabat, Turkmenistan, Nov. 16

By Huseyn Hasanov– Trend:

During the first ten months of 2018, cargo transportation from China to Iran through the territory of Turkmenistan increased 1.5 times compared to the same period of 2017, the Ministry of Railway Transport of Turkmenistan said in a report.

The total length of the China-Kazakhstan-Turkmenistan-Iran route is about 10,000 kilometers. And the travel time of trains sent from China's various industrial centers is about two weeks, which is on average two times faster than traveling by sea.

In order to establish regular transportation and settlement of logistics in the region, several test trips of trains consisting of an average of 40-50 cars have been made, Turkmenistan's State News Agency reported.

The trains departed from the Chinese cities of Yiwu, Changsha, Yinchuan, Xi'an, and Bayannur. At the same time, there are two routes in Turkmenistan, from the Serhetyaka railway station on the border with Kazakhstan to Sarakhs on the southeastern border with Iran, or from the Akyayla station (Turkmenistan) - Inche-burun (Iran).

Compared to the same period of 2017, the volume of freight transportation by railway Serhetyaka-Akyayla has increased by 3.5 times. And there was also a two times increase in the opposite direction - from Iran through Turkmenistan to Kazakhstan on the same route.

An important point was the Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Tajikistan route. In November 2016, the Kerki-Ymamnazar(Turkmenistan)-Aqina(Afghanistan) railway was commissioned - the first phase of the Asian International Railway Transport Corridor, designed to provide access to China, India and seaports of Pakistan.

This project was implemented by departments of the Ministry of Railways of Turkmenistan, which also laid a section of the railway line from Ymamnazar town to Aqina in Afghanistan.

In February, the Serhetabat-Torghundi railway was commissioned. Turkmenistan built this Turkmen-Afghan highway.

At this stage, the railways and highways connect the city of Torghundi with Ashgabat, then with the Turkmenbashi International Seaport in the Caspian Sea. The corridor will further continue through the Caspian Sea to Baku, then through Tbilisi to Ankara and to Istanbul.

The Turkmenistan State News Agency reported that over the ten months of this year, the volume of cargo transportation along Kerki-Ymamnazar-Aqina and Serhetabat-Torghundi, the Turkmen-Afghan railway routes, increased twice compared with the same period of 2017.