Tehran, Iran (PortSEurope) February 16, 2021 – The long dormant project for a container-carrying Economic Cooperation Organization (ECO) train, which made only one maiden voyage in 2009, is expected to be resumed this year, linking Islamabad, Tehran and Istanbul (ITI), according to Iran’s official Islamic Republic News Agency (IRNA). It is expected that the revival of the ITI ECO Train will join China’s Belt and
Road Initiative (BRI, the New Silk Road) via a rail link connecting Pakistan’s ML-1 railroad to China’s Uyghur-Xinjiang region, which is the major China-Pakistan economic zone. Completion of the project for the rail link is scheduled for the year 2026. The 6,540-km ECO train railway’s length includes 1,950 km in Turkey, 2,600 km in Iran, and 1,900 km in Pakistan. It travels from Islamabad to Istanbul 10 days, much faster than the 21-day sea voyage between Turkey and Pakistan. The ITI ECO Train will be the first regular China-Turkey rail service, a containerised cargo alternative to sea transport. After eliminating border formalities and bureaucracy, it will deliver fast and reliable transport of European goods to Pakistan and Tehran. Via Turkey it will connect the two countries to the Mediterranean Sea. The 10th meeting of high-ranking Islamabad-Tehran-Istanbul Railway Project workgroup was recently convened and discussed the urgent revival of this major regional economic plan. Copyright (C) PortSEurope. All Rights Reserved. 2021
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