Railway connectivity important for cooperation with Central Asia: Saad

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Islamabad—Pakistan and Tajikistan on Wednesday decided to enhance cooperation in the sector of Railways. This understanding was reached during a meeting of Minister of Railways Khawaja Saad Rafique and Ambassador of Tajikistan Sherali S. Jononov here. They exchanged views on matters of mutual interest and about enhancing cooperation for railway connectivity via Afghanistan. Tajik ambassador mentioned that Pakistan was at a God gifted location and was like a bridge.
Connectivity was a basis of regional economic cooperation for Pakistan and other countries of the region including Afghanistan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan, especially in the context of regional economic growth. All Central Asian Republics want to be connected to Gwadar Port. “Railway connectivity through Afghanistan is important for cooperation with Central Asia,” said Khawaja Saad Rafique.
He said he believed that railway track between Torkham and Kabul, which will be later extended to Tajikistan and other Central Asian Republics, can usher in a new era of development for Pakistan and Afghanistan. He also mentioned that Central Asia Regional Economic Cooperation (CAREC) is also playing an important role.
CAREC is a partnership of ten countries working together to promote development cooperation leading accelerated growth besides envisioning implementation of China Pakistan Economic Corridor. Pakistan will soon complete its feasibility study on Peshawar Jalalabad railway track. Pakistan is also taking an initiative to complete 11 kilometres railway track between Chaman and Spin Boldak.
This track will be funded under Prime Minister package for reconstruction of Afghanistan.—NNI