Local officials in western Herat province on Tuesday said that the third phase of Khawaf-Herat railroad has been completed and that the project will be inaugurated in the near future.
The fourth phase of the project will be implemented soon too, said officials.
Meanwhile, officials of Afghanistan Chamber of Commerce and Industries (ACCI) have described implementation of the project a milestone towards enhancing trade and economic relations between Afghanistan and Iran.
The project will also help to reduce additional expenditure in trade and commerce relations, said the officials.
It is expected that leaders from Afghanistan and Iran will officially inaugurate the 61km-long railroad project in the near future.
“Herat-Khawaf project is ready to start operations. We have enough budget for the fourth phase. We worked tirelessly with our colleagues in the ministry of public works and Afghanistan Railway Authority over the past six months,” said Muhaiuddin Noori, acting governor of Herat.
“Implementation of the project will have significant impact on the economy of the country,” said Khalil Ahmad Yarmand, head of ACCI in Herat.
Khawaf-Herat railway is 130km long, of which 70km is inside Iran soil and 60km inside Afghanistan. With the completion of this project, Afghanistan can enjoy a railway for the first time linking Turkey and Europe with Iran ports in the Persian Gulf.
The project was started in April 2007 with Iran’s aid at a cost of $75 million and was due to finish in 2009, but was delayed because of certain problems. Completion of the project will affect transit facilities in Afghanistan and solve many investors' and merchants’ problems.