A high-ranking official with the Iranian railways organization has briefed Trend on the latest developments concerning Azerbaijan’s plans to invest in the development of his country’s railway system in a bid to help the full activation of the International North-South Transportation Corridor.
According to Trend news, Nourollah Beiranvand, the deputy for planning and investment at the Islamic Republic of Iran Railways, says the Azerbaijani officials have recently agreed to provide 60 million euros for developing railway facilities in Astara City (Iran).
According to the official, about a half of it is projected to finance the construction of a 1.4 kilometer-long railway in Astara as well as the railway station building.
The remaining half will go for the construction of four terminals of fuelling, general cargo, grain and containers, he said.
The official underscored that the annual capacity of the corridor for transferring goods is expected to hike by two million tons after finalizing the project for creating railway facilities in Astara city.
Elaborating on the details of the agreement, Nourollah Beiranvand added that the Azerbaijani side has also undertaken covering investment risks of the project.
Missing link: Rasht-Astara section
Further speaking about the plans to connect the railways of Iran and Azerbaijan as part of the International North-South Transportation Corridor, Nourollah Beiranvand described the Rasht-Astara railway segment (inside Iran) as the "missing link" of the corridor.
To complete the railway links of the transportation corridor, Iran had earlier agreed to construct inland railway segments in northern parts of the country in order to extend its railway network to the border area with the neighboring Azerbaijan through the two cities of Astara on both sides.