Russia, Azerbaijan and Iran to cut rail tariffs by 50%

A trilateral meeting between Russia, Azerbaijan and Iran agreed to reduce railway tariffs by 50% in order to activate North-South Transport Corridor.

Representatives of the three countries exchanged views at a trilateral meeting in Moscow over organizing cargo within framework of the North-South international transport corridor through Azerbaijan's territory as well as development of transit potential of Iran’s Astara border terminal.

The main objective of the tripartite session was to determine preferential tariff rates for 2017 and determine transfer time on the route.

Representatives of the three states mulled over activation of the route for transportation of cargos from Russia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Latvia, Estonia and Finland to the Persian Gulf and India and vice versa. They also reached consensus on tariffs rates, the Mehr News Agency reported.

Deputy Head of the Iranian Railway Company for Operation Affairs, Hossein Ashouri, said that “after 14 years, Iran, Russia and India have finally agreed on launch of the corridor while the first test freight train was deployed to the Mumbai-Bandar Abbas- Astara-Moscow route in 2016,” voicing optimism that the new corridor will become seriously activated once Finland, Estonia, Latvia and Belarus join the route.

“Given that construction of the Astara (Iran)-Astara (Azerbaijan) railway line project will be accomplished in two months, Tehran and Baku are firmly determined to enable the corridor,” Ashouri said, noting that the Qazvin-Rasht route will become operational within the next six months speeding up freight transportation.

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