Iran talks details, operation of Rasht-Astara railway
Tehran, Iran, Jan.15
The Rasht – Astara railway is to start operation by the beginning of new Iranian calendar year (March 21,2019), Maziyar Yazdani, the deputy head of The Islamic Republic of Iran Railways (RAI) for infrastructure and technical affairs told Trend.
Referring to the Astara railway track, he said that the cargo from Azerbaijan is currently being transported to Iran, from the Astara terminal station.
Speaking about the Rasht-Astara rail track, Yazdani said the track is under construction.
With regards to financing the Rasht-Astara project, he said it has to do with Iranian Ministry of Economic Affairs and Finance and Azerbaijan's Ministry of Economy.
"The two ministries have wrapped up the basic work and soon the operation will be given to Iran's railways," he said.
He went on to add that at the moment, the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Finance is in charge of financial issues, while the technical part is handled by the Ministry of Roads and Urban Development.
Referring to Azerbaijan role as a contractor and operator of the Rasht – Astara railway, Yazdani said that these issues haven't been drafted yet.
"Azerbaijan would usually have share in financing and investing, but the details should be reviewed," he said.
Yazdani noted that Iran is currently at the stage of ratifying loan contracts with Azerbaijan.
The Qazvin-Rasht-Astara (Iran) - Astara (Azerbaijan) railway is part of International North-South Transportation Corridor, which will connect northern Europe with south-east Asia, in particular by connecting the railways of Azerbaijan, Iran and Russia.