Turkmenistan restores the Silk Route in railway format

Container train making another China – Kazakhstan – Turkmenistan – Iran test run went from Turkmenistan to Iran via Akyayla railway station.

Development of the most advantageous routes connecting the countries of huge Asian continent including transit corridors of Turkmenistan meets the objectives of the development of logistic system of our state taking into account its favourable geographic location. President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov, who initiated large-scale transport projects aimed at the formation of multimodal infrastructure, notes that the expansion of transit capabilities of our state is one of the important conditions of social, economic and technical progress and involvement of Turkmenistan into national economic relations.

The train of 41 container carriages loaded with consumer goods that left the city of Changsha (Hunan province) – large industrial centre in the south of China, would help to detect the timing and other working parameters of the route for establishment of regular transportation.

The departure of the train Changsha (China) – Altynkol (Kazakhstan) – Bolashak – Serhetyaka (Turkmenistan) – Akyayla – Incheburun (Iran) – Tehran was held in the solemn atmosphere meeting the importance of the event. High-rank leaders, representative of the government and business circles of the PRC as well as member states including Turkmenistan took part in the event organized by transportation company Hunan Xiang OU Express Co., Ltd together with the Department of Trade of Hunan province.

The participants of the ceremony highlighted the important role of transport corridor China – Kazakhstan – Turkmenistan – Iran as one of the key route of the Silk Route, which is revived in new mode.

Operation of this line will allow increasing the volume of cargo traffic and open new capabilities of trade and economic cooperation in the region and in the continent, President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov mentions.

Another similar China – Kazakhstan – Turkmenistan – Iran train will left on December 29 from Yínchuān (autonomic region in central part of the PRC) and the third one on the following day, December 30, from Xian, Shaanxi province in the north of China.

The first cargo train testing the capabilities of transport and logistic infrastructure of four friendly states arrived in Kazakhstan at Altynkol border railway station on December 4, and reached Turkmenistan border on January 7 where it was officially met at Serhetyaka station.

After, it went 825 kilometres up to Turkmen station Akyayla located in the south of Balkan Velayat ahead of the schedule and entered Iranian territory. The reduction of time of the way means the reduction of transportation expenses, in other words, improves the profitability of the route.

For Turkmenistan, the participation in this international logistic project means the activation of transit capabilities as today, the Silk Route is restored again in modern automobile, railway, maritime and air routes. These lines, which almost match the directions of ancient transcontinental routes, would provide the consolidation of foreign economic relations, expansion of transit transportation in Eurasian continent, cultural and tourist contacts. It is rather symbolical that it was the first days of 2018, which slogan is “Turkmenistan – the Heart of the Great Silk Route”, when the iron caravan of transit cargo crossed the territory of our country by the railway.

During the working visit of Turkmen delegation to the PRC for participation in the departure ceremony of test train from China to Iran via our country, the meetings with the Director of China Railway International Multimodal Transport Co., Ltd (Chinese Railways) were held in Peking. It was noted during the negotiations that the establishment of regular transportation of container trains on this route opens the opportunity to include other states including Afghanistan and Turkey to this network.

It will be supported by the construction of the railway from frontier station Serhetabat in Mary Velayat to Afghan city Turgundy. This important for our south neighbour project was launched by President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov on November 29, 2017. Putting of this line into operation is planned in the second half of November of this year.

International transport corridors became the key mechanisms of the globalization of the world economy. Being the catalyst of these processes, Turkmenistan forms up one of the most important logistic centre of the continent on its territory based on stable economic and social development of the country and the strategy of the realization of geo-economic potential of our state of President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov aimed at the interests of the region and the world.