Technical study to begin on Afghan railway project: officials



The head of the Afghan railway department met with Pakistan and Uzbekistan authorities, and, according to the department, they decided to start technical studies for the Trans-Afghan railway project, and funding will be provided by Tashkent and Islamabad.

According to the department, almost 465,000 metric tons of goods have been exported and imported by rail through the nation’s land ports in the past month.

“The railway department of Afghanistan is trying to increase meetings with neighboring countries to create perfect harmony so we can turn Afghanistan into the economic crossroads of Asia through the railway line,” said Abdul Sami Durani, spokesman for the railway department.

Meanwhile, the Ministry of the Commerce and Industry said that currently Afghan traders send their goods through Hairitan, Aqina, and Torghonde ports to regional and European countries.

“Our traders can import and export their products in a short time and at low cost; we are connected to the regional countries by Hairatan, Aqina, and Torghonde ports,” said Akhonzada AbdulSalam Jawad, spokesman for the Ministry of Commerce and Industry.

Some traders welcomed the facilities for export and import by railway and called on the railway department for more facilities in this regard.

“Railways from Hairatan to Mazar-e-Sharif provide great assistance for traders, and also the Khawaf railway in Herat … we asked the government to complete this project to create opportunities for traders,” said Ahmad Sayed Sediqqi, deputy of the Chamber of Commerce and Investment in Herat.

“We request that the officials of the Afghan railways reconsider the relevance of their their work procedure, because their work bill is from the time of the previous government and is very complicated and we hope that they will reevaluate it,” said Abdul Mujeeb Niazi, head of the Chamber of Commerce and Investment in Faryab.

Recently, the foreign ministers of Uzbekistan and Pakistan emphasized the importance of using the existing cooperation capacities in the field of the Trans-Afghan railway, on the sidelines of the Economic Cooperation Organization meeting.

According to the railway department, the Afghan train project from Mazar-e-Sharif to Pakistan will be is 764 km long and will be completed in five years and will cost six billion dollars.—Tolo news