TEHRAN (Iran News) –Head of Iran-Russia Joint Trade Council Mr. Vladimir Abedinov in meeting with Head of Iran Chamber of Commerce Gholam-Hossein Shafei said Moscow is seeking the boost of Russia-Azerbaijan-Iran-Pakistan rail route for fascinating the trade trend.
In the meeting, Abedinov expressed interest for boosting trade relations between Iran and Russia and pointed to the sanctions against his country, adding that these developments have led to some changes in the logistic and transit routes in the region. He added that Russia’s trade relations have affected by the sanctions and it needs review, noting that in this line, Russia looks for new routes for transportation in the region.
He pointed to some important rail routes in Iran and stipulated that completion of Rasht-Astara route is very important for Russia’s trade goal and this makes the Pakistan route towards Russia to be available.
He said that by the way this route in Pakistan has bene old and needs to be reconstructed and Russia is ready to take advantage of it after its reconstruction, reiterating that this route needs to be completed by Iran as soon as possible.
He also pointed to the route for linking Russia to Iran’s northern ports via ships and dispatch of consignments to Iran’s southern ports and transfer of them via ships to Pakistan, emphasizing that this route is very complicated and therefore Russia is looking for a replacement for railway via Azerbaijan to Iran, Pakistan and India.
Abedinov stated that chambers of commerce of these four countries can form a workgroup and after feasible studies, they table their proposals for completing, renovation and reinforcement of the rail routes and submit them to their governments.
Then Head of Iran Chamber of Commerce Mr. Shafei, for his part, termed special the current condition in the region and called for making appropriate decision fitting the current condition.
He said Iran’s government has prioritized the issue of transit in accordance with the existing condition in the region although there are some infrastructural problems in the field of port between Iran and Russia. He added that one of Iran’s problems in marine transportation is lack of the ro-ro ships and as he knows talks are underway for the purchase of some ro-ro ships and this can improve the condition of marine trade between Iran and Russia via the Caspian Sea.
He also questioned the rail speed and said that the current rail speed in Iran is between 15 to 20 kilometers per hour which is not a good record and at the same time Iran is facing with the shortage of wagon that Russia can help it to be resolved.
Shafei admitted that rail problems in Pakistan despite Iran’s persistence are not easily resolved, adding that for example dispatch of a consignment via Iran’s railway to Lahore of Pakistan takes 35 days.
He welcomed Abedinov’s proposal for the launch of workgroup and said Iran Chamber of Commerce can form the group in the next two months.