ISTANBUL-TEHRAN-ISLAMABAD RAILWAY PROJECT
The member countries held a meeting of Economic Cooperation Organization. The authorities indicated that the Istanbul-Tehran-Islamabad (ITI) railway project will resume its operations soon.
THE RAILWAY PROJECT
The national railways of Turkey, Iran, and Pakistan have mutually agreed to resume regular operations of the ITI container train.
Hence, until recently, these countries carried out many test journeys. However, these countries did not regularize the transit line, due to the pending infrastructure development. Now, growing changes in the diplomatic landscape between the three countries have allowed the railway operation to resume. Subsequently, all three countries have agreed to unified tariffs and a steady timetable.
Initially launched in 2009, the ITI framework exists within the Economic Cooperation Organization (ECO). Currently, all three countries are actively promoting the availability of the train to make sure it is working as soon as possible.
The railway line has great potential. Initially, one train took 15 days to make the 6500km journey. Later, they reduced it to 11.5 days. The train can carry 20, 40 ft rail cars. Nations recognized the route as an international corridor.
WHAT IS ECO?
The Economic Cooperation Organization, or ECO is an Asian political and economic intergovernmental organization. It was founded in 1985 in Tehran by the leaders of Iran, Pakistan, and Turkey. It provides a platform to discuss ways to improve development and promote trade and investment opportunities. Hadi Soleimanpour (Iranian national) is ECO’s Secretary General. He is the 12th Secretary General of the ECO who started his tenure in August 2018.
The ECO is an ad hoc organization under the United Nations Charter.The goal is to set up a single market for goods and services, much like the European Union. The ECO’s secretariat and cultural department are in Iran, its economic bureau is in Turkey and its scientific bureau is situated in Pakistan.
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