December 18, 2023 - 16:51 AMT
Iran to start construction of Rasht-Astara rail route in 2024

As part of the International North-South Transport Corridor (INSTC), Iran will start construction of the Rasht-Astara (Iran to Azerbaijan) railway in Iran’s northern province of Gilan at the beginning of 2024, Iranian Minister of Roads and Urban Development, Mehrdad Bazrpash said, Azerbaijani media report.

The minister said that Iran aims to boost transit by developing its relations with neighboring countries and enhancing the corridors that pass through its territory.

Bazrpash said that cargo transit through Iran has increased in the first eight months of the current Iranian year (March 21 through November 21, 2023), compared to the same period last year.

He added that Russia and other countries have expressed interest in increasing cargo transit through Iran.

“Therefore, we should use all the potential of the country for cargo transportation in Iran,” he said.

Bazrpash also said that the Rasht-Caspian railway line, which is part of the INSTC, will be completed by the end of the current Iranian year (March 19, 2024). This will create a railway connection from the Persian Gulf in the south of Iran to the Caspian Sea in the north.

On May 17, 2023, Russia and Iran signed an agreement to build the Rasht-Astara railway in Gilan province. The railway will be 163 km long and will have 9 stations. This project will improve the North-South International Corridor and link Iran’s railway network to the Caucasus countries, Russia and Northern Europe.