New railway line connecting east and west
A new rail link from the Persian Gulf through Iraq to Turkey and eventually Europe is in the planning stages. Iraq is accelerating the project as it is well aware of its potential to play an important role in trade with the southeast. It is reported by Railway Supply magazine with reference to RailFreight.
The project is called a dry channel that will link the South Faw port, which is under construction since 2020, with northern Iraq and Turkey. The project involves the construction of new power lines with a total length of 1200 km. This was reported by local media, citing Younis Al-Kaabi, director of the General Rail Company, which is part of the Iraqi Ministry of Transport. The network will then be connected to rail and road networks in Europe via Turkey in order to expand trade with those countries, Al-Kaabi added.
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Turkey has already taken the position of a major transit country for rail transport from east to west. It plays an important role in the Middle Corridor, where goods from China travel west across the Caspian Sea. Recently, more and more companies include ports in Turkey in their network with rail links to these ports.
When the South Faw port is completed, this will add another option for traffic coming from the southeast. Cargoes from India or China will have an additional hub in the region, next to the Iranian port of Bandar Abbas and the port of Jebel Ali in the UAE.
The Italian company PEG was commissioned to conduct a feasibility study, which will be submitted before the end of 2023. Also this year, a tender is expected to be announced for the construction of the first line.
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