The Afghanistan Railway Authority (AfRA) executed and officially singed a new Operation and Maintenance (O&M)
The Afghanistan Railway Authority (AfRA) executed and officially singed a new Operation and Maintenance (O&M) Contract for the Hairatan to Mazar-e-Sharif railway line on 15th of March 2015, with the Operator “SE Sogdiana Trans” of the Republic of Uzbekistan. This new contract is called MOMTC (expires on 4 December 2017) and will provide the following four services: Management, Operation & Infrastructure Maintenance of the line and will provide a comprehensive, theoretical and practical Training for the AfRA’s personnel.
Hairatan on the border with Uzbekistan serves as gateway for half of Afghanistan’s external trade, while Mazar-e-Sharif is Afghanistan’s fourth-largest city and major trading center in the north. The construction of this railway line of 75Km was completed in 2011 and since then the operation and maintenance work has been going on. During each operation year, about 2.5 million tons of goods were transported on the Hairatan – Mazar-e-Sharif railway line, strengthening the local economy, increasing regional trade, promoting regional cooperation, and helping Afghanistan begin to redefine its role in the region.
The Hairatan – Mazar-e-Sharif railway line has brought positive economic effects since it was built. The lower transport cost have reduced the price of goods and have resulted in higher quality goods coming into the country. More than 7 million people have benefited from this line through jobs and increased trade. This has included freight operators, traders, businesses, and the local communities.
Having an efficient, safe, and reliable railway transport network operating in northern Afghanistan has shown an overall employment growth of over 10% per year since 2010. About 1,200 people are currently employed in logistics and unloading operations, while more jobs are expected to merge in logistics services at railroad stations.
This railway line forms part of the Transport Corridors 3 & 6 of the Central Asia Regional Economic Cooperation (CAREC), connecting the Central Asia to the South Asia, the Caucasus and the Middle East. At a later stage, this railway network will be extended to Herat in the West via Sheberghan – Andkhoy – Aqina with connection to Turkmenistan and Tajikistan in the east via Kunduz – Sherkhan Bandar, which is part of another project called (Northern Afghanistan Railway Project).
Source: Afghanistan Railway Authority, 24 March 2015
This contract replaces the original 2011 operating contract, which was worth worth $32m/year. On 8 February 2011 UTY established its Sogdiana Trans subsidiary to undertake operations and maintenance in Afghanistan.3
The latest contract runs for three years and will see UTY paid $19m/year to manage the line. UTY will pay taxes, and is to provide training for 50 Afghans each year. Until now the railway has only been used for imports, but the new contract should see the line used to carry a total of at least four million tonnes of Afghan goods for export.
- Upkeep matters: Afghanistan, Uzbekistan renew railway project agreement, Afghanistan Times, 15 March 2015 ↩
- Uzbekistan extends contract on railway maintenance in Afghanistan, Demir Azizov, Trend, 21 March 2015 ↩
- История проекта Sogdiana Trans ↩
Uzbekistan Railways To Help Build Afghan Railway System
Uzbekistan Railways is to construct a new railway from Mazar-e-Sharif to Andkhoy in western Afghanistan, according to the Uzbek company.
This railway section is part of the project to construct a railroad in Afghanistan with a total length of 2,000 kilometers from Mazar-e-Sharif through Kabul and Kandahar to Herat and back.
Minimum income of Uzbekistan Railways from the operation of the Hairatan Mazar-e-Sharif railroad section in Afghanistan during 2011-2013 will be $96 million.
Source: Uzbekistan Railways To Help Build Afghan Railway System, AsiaPulse News, 2011-09-30
Uzbek national railway UTY has begun construction of the Hayratan to Mazar-i-Sharif railway.
Construction of Afghan railway launched
AFGHANISTAN: A ceremony on January 22 marked the start of construction of a 75 km rail link from Uzbekistan to the city of Mazar-i-Sharif in northern Afghanistan. The line is being built by Uzbek national railway UTY, which said it will be ‘a vivid testimony to the friendly relations between the two countries.’
Source: Railway Gazette International, 2010-01-27