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China’s Ambition for High-Speed Railroad Linkup
Economy, Business And Markets

China’s Ambition for High-Speed Railroad Linkup

China Railway Company is planning to build a high-speed rail link that will carry both passengers and cargo between China and Iran.
According to China Daily, the proposal from the state-owned company was put forward at a meeting of China Civil Engineering Society last week. It would take advantage of the easing of global sanctions against Iran, while strengthening Iran’s place in China’s growing economic orbit, Chinatopix reported.
The online news publication is a YIBADA Group company, based in New York City.
Under Chinese President Xi Jinping, the country’s economic influence has expanded rapidly. The government is currently working on a plan to create a network that connects economies as far apart as western Europe and southeast Asia. The aim of this network is to increase cross-border trade.
China’s proposed rail link could also be put to use exporting Iranian oil, Bloomberg reported.
The rail route would begin in the capital of western Xinjiang Province, Urumqi, and end in Tehran, the Iranian capital—some 2,000 miles apart. It would stop along Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan, Quartz reported.
Already, Central Asia has rail infrastructure capable of moving goods between the region and China. A major problem, however, is that Central Asian countries use a different width of track than China and most of the rest of the world. This means that there are delays during the transportation of goods, as trains wait for days to change their gauges on certain crossings.
China plans to construct a single rail line based on a uniform gauge along the whole route. This would cut down the time needed to move goods and raise the route’s demand against ocean freight alternatives. While passenger trains can reach a speed limit of 300 km/h on the proposed rail route, the speed limit for freight trains is 120 km/h.

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