Herat-Khaf Railway Historic Step for Economic Prosperity: President Ghani
The presidents of Afghanistan and Iran along with officials from both countries officially inaugurated the Herat-Khaf railway project via a virtual conference. The Presidents of the two countries described it as a big step for economic prosperity and reinforcement of relations between the two nations.
Herat-Khaf railway, covering 140 km (86 mil) from Khaf in Iran to Rozanak in Afghanistan’s Herat, officially opened on Thursday which will connect Afghanistan to the ports of southern Iran, as well as the Iran-Turkey and Europe railway network.
Addressing a virtual conference, President Ashraf Ghani said, “Today, we are witnessing the opening of the Herat-Khaf railway, a historic and vital project”.
“The completion of this important project, despite the limitations caused by the Coronavirus, is a clear sign of the national will of both countries and the result of efforts made by the staff of this important project,” he said. “I welcome the opening of this historic project as an important step towards economic revival, development, and prosperity in both countries,” he added.
President Ghani also pledged that the country’s railway network will be expanded, stressing that connecting the Herat railway to Mazar-e-Sharif was a priority for the Afghan government, and work on this project will begin soon.
Addressing the opening ceremony of the Herat-Khaf railway, the Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said, “today is a day of happiness, a day of mercy, a day of evolvement for both Iran and Afghanistan nations”.
According to Mr. Rouhani, the connection of Herat province to the Iranian railway network, as well as its expansion and development from Herat to Mazar-e-Sharif, and from there to Central Asian countries, will connect the whole region and improve trade, economy, and transit.
“Iran and Afghanistan as two congenial and same-language neighbors can use each other’s capacities and achieve economic growth,” Mr. Rouhani emphasized.
The Iranian President further said that the stability of Afghanistan is the stability of Iran and security in Afghanistan is the security of Iran and the whole region, adding that expansion of trade and economy will lead to lasting security and stability in Afghanistan.
Herat-Khaf railway from Iran’s Khaf to Afghanistan’s Herat has been built in four sections, two on the Iranian soil and two on the Afghan soil. Iran is responsible for the construction of three sections, which have now been completed, and one part, which extends from Rozanak to Herat, is the responsibility of Afghanistan. It is expected to be completed soon.