Russian Transport Minister Vitaly Savelyev revealed the details of the upcoming construction of the Rasht-Astara railway line, which is part of the North-South international transport corridor.
The minister noted the rail line will be built jointly, but there will be a separation.
"Construction materials that are clearly significantly cheaper in Iran, such as cement, sand and gravel, will be acquired in Iran. More complex products, the main component of the financing, will go to Russian companies. This is rails, prefabricated concrete products, locomotives, automation equipment, signalling and so on," Savelyev said.
According to him, they are looking for companies from both sides that will participate in this.
Rasht-Astara track gauge
Asked about the planned gauge of the track, the minister said the plan is to build a dual gauge line.
"We will start with 1435 gauge, but we will build a dual gauge that will make it possible to lay another rail [for 1520 gauge] if it is necessary to expand shipping volume," Savelyev said.
The minister said that Russia and Iran will prepare a general contract on the construction of the Rasht-Astara railway line in Iran in the coming months.
Savelyev said that during a visit to Iran they talked through the main terms. Now they are exchanging letters, as they agreed with the transport minister of Iran, Mehrdad Bazrpash, and will present their companies from both sides that will participate in this.
"We think that in the near future a few months might be needed to draft a general, main, contract between our companies for them to start implementing this project. Money has been allocated, now we need to prepare for implementation," the Russian Transport Minister said, when asked if a construction contract had been signed.