The Astara-Rasht railway, to be constructed in Iran, will help increase the attractiveness of the North-South project, First Deputy CEO of Russian Railways Logistics (RRL) Eduard Alyrzaev told Trend.
“Probably, the main obstacle to development of the North-South project’s potential is the Astara-Rasht section,” he said, adding that at the section it is necessary to switch the cargo transportation from railways to road transport, which leads to an increase in transportation time and a reduction in transportable goods.
Azerbaijan and Iran signed the “Agreement on Financing the Construction of the Astara-Rasht Railway in the Territory of Iran” in Baku on March 28.
According to Alyrzaev, the commissioning of this railway section will play a positive role in the development of the North-South project.
“It will be possible to cut the time and costs of transportation. It is not a secret that road transportation is more expensive than maritime transportation. But the delivery period remains a priority. When the North-South starts operating at full capacity, shippers will see its advantages over sea transportation,” he said.
The Qazvin-Rasht-Astara (Iran)-Astara (Azerbaijan) railroad is a part of the North-South transport corridor that will connect northern Europe with southeast Asia, as well as by uniting the railways of Azerbaijan, Iran and Russia.
The cargo will be transported through India and further through the Persian Gulf, Iran, Azerbaijan and Russia in the direction of the Scandinavian countries and Northern Europe within 14 days.
Russian Railways Logistics is the largest multimodal logistics operator in the CIS and Baltic countries. The company is one of the leaders of the Russian market of logistics outsourcing for industrial enterprises, providing integrated services for managing supply chains.