The proposed north-south railway line will improve Turkmenistan's accessibility to Kazakhstan, the Persian Gulf countries, the Russian Federation, and South Asia; and increase regional trade. The Project will contribute to sustainable economic growth in Turkmenistan and development of an integrated, efficient railway system in the region. The Project will reduce the transport cost, cut travel time, and improve accessibility to rural areas of the country. This will generate benefits beyond railway transport cost and time savings. Experience in Europe and Africa indicate that transit traffic is usually a lucrative business for railways, the government, and the service sector including logistics. The new railway line will also help implement the Awaza National Tourism Zone project in Turkmenistan, simplifying transport of construction materials and logistics support to the zone. The rail link is expected to be ready for service by 2012.
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