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July 15, 2017

Iran seeks Quetta-Taftan train section in CPEC


July 15, 2017

ISLAMABAD: Iran has said that being an important section in Islamabad-Tehran-Istanbul (ITI) Container Train Corridor, Quetta-Taftan railway line must be given extra attention by Pakistan, a statement said on Friday. 

“It should also be given priority in China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) project. Moreover, all the technical and mechanical issues of this section must be resolved as soon as possible,” Majid Arjooni, DG South East Railway Company of Iran, demanded during a meeting with Parveen Agha, secretary Ministry of Railways at her office.  “Iran has also reduced the transshipment cost for ITI freight train at its Zahedan station. The newly proposed rates for loaded and empty containers have been set at 30 euros and 10 euros respectively.” 

Arjooni, who is leading a high-level Iranian delegation to Pakistan, also urged the government of Pakistan to ensure the doors of container train were sealed instead of welded.  The total length of track from Quetta to Zahedan is 732 km with the last 100 kilometer section being inside Iran.

Earlier, the 9th High Level Working Group Meeting of the ECO ITI Container Train on Thursday expressed satisfaction on a resolution by Afghanistan to cooperate in ITI freight Train project. The meeting was attended by delegates from Iran, Turkey, Afghanistan, IDB and ECO secretariat. 

The Islamabad-Tehran-Istanbul journey is 6,566 km with 1,900 km in Pakistan, 2,570 km in Iran, and 2,036 km in Turkey. The freight train would carry textile products, cotton, medical hand tools, furniture, sporting goods, fruits and edible products westbound, with machinery and parts, chemical products, paper and paper products, cars spares and agricultural tools going eastbound. At the moment of the launch, trade between the three countries amounted to $1 billion and the officials of the railways estimate a significant growth in trade with the solution of all problems related to regulations and facility of integrated traffic.

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