Islamabad: On July 18, a news source reported that Pakistan, Uzbekistan, and Afghanistan will sign a joint arrangement to connect the Uzbek rail network with Pakistan Railways.
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The Uzbekistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan (UAP) railways project route was finalized at a recent conference of a trilateral working group. The railway connection will travel through Termiz in Uzbekistan, Mazar-i-Sharif and Logar in Afghanistan, and will reach Pakistan via the Kharlachi frontier crossing in Kurram. This meeting marked the working group’s second gathering since January.
The Ministry of Railways announced that the UAP railway project intends to enhance regional, transit, and bilateral trade among the participating nations, as well as improve inter-regional connections. The railway line will facilitate both passenger and freight traffic, contributing to regional trade and economic development.
In addition, the three countries reached an agreement on a timetable for undertaking technical studies, securing funding, and addressing other crucial issues for the prompt implementation of the project. According to Uzbekistan, the 760-kilometer railway will considerably reduce cargo delivery times between Uzbekistan and Pakistan, possibly by five days, while reducing transportation costs by at least 40 percent. It is anticipated that the project will be concluded by the end of 2027, with trains capable of transporting up to 15 million tonnes of goods annually by 2030.
In addition, the three nations have previously signed a roadmap strategic plan for the construction of a 573-kilometer-long Trans-Afghan railway connecting Central Asia with locations on the Arabian Sea. This agreement contains provisions for a joint expedition to survey the route and its terrain, as well as a preliminary project feasibility study.