President of JSC Russian Railways Oleg Belozerov met with Minister of Roads and Urban Development of the Islamic Republic of Iran Abbas Ahmad Akhoundi, as well as President of the Islamic Republic of Iran Railways (IRIR) Mohsen Pour Seyed Aghaei in Tehran (Iran).
In the meeting the parties discussed the prospects of cooperation between Russia and Iran in the development of the railway infrastructure of the Caspian Sea region, as well as attracting additional cargo traffic to rail.
“Right now the potential of our cooperation is far from being completely utilized,” said Mr. Belozerov.
“At the same time, Russian and Iranian railways have accumulated experience in the joint implementation of infrastructure projects in 2012. JSC Russian Railways has completed the electrification of the Tabriz–Azarshahr railway line.”
During the meeting with the president of IRIR, the formation of a direct rail link along the west branch of the North–South international transport corridor was brought up. The project envisages the construction of the Rasht–Astara railway line, which will connect the railways of Russia, Azerbaijan, and Iran. The new infrastructure will accelerate the delivery of goods between the countries of Europe, the Persian Gulf, and South Asia.
The two sides also discussed the conditions for implementing the project of electrifying the Garmsar–Ince Burun line with a length of 495 km, including 203 km in a mountainous area. The modernization of this infrastructure will increase the capacity and speed of trains.
Following the meeting, a protocol was signed on the main directions of further cooperation between JSC Russian Railways and IRIR. The document was signed by Mr. Belozerov and Dr. Mohsen Pour Seyed Aghaei. The parties will continue to work to achieve joint projects, strengthen cooperation, and attract additional freight traffic to the North–South international transport corridor.
The delegation of JSC Russian Railways also took part in the 1st UIC/ITE International Oil, Rail & Ports Conference, organized with the participation of the International Union of Railways as part of RailExpo 2016. In his speech at the conference, Mr. Belozerov noted that today foreign economic cooperation between our countries is gaining more and more turnover, and it has a positive effect on the change in the volume of rail traffic.
[quote font_size=”20″]“If last year there was a decrease in traffic volume including railway transport, for four months of this year the transportation of goods between Russia and Iran has increased by more than 25%,” [/quote]said Mr. Belozerov.
He also noted that there is considerable potential in the development of railways connecting Iran and Russia. For its part, JSC Russian Railways is doing everything possible for smooth cargo flow through the territory of Russia: the company is developing approaches to the ports of the South Basin and Astrakhan transport hub and provides a range of transportation and logistics services in the direction of the North–South international transport corridor.