Deutsche Bahn agrees to test drive new South West transport corridor to Iran

Deutsche Bahn, one of the world’s  largest transport companies, has agreed to test drive the new South West Transport Corridor linking India, Iran and other Gulf states to Europeby the end of November. At a meeting in Tehran with senior transport officials from Azerbaijan, Iran, and Georgia, the German company pledged to send a freight train pulling 41 containers to the Romania port of Constanta where its cargo will be loaded on ferries destined for  Georgia on at the other end of the Black Sea.
After a further rail journey  to Astara in Azerbaijan, the goods will be transported by truck to Qazvin in Iran and from there on  to Tehran. The journey from Constanta to the Iranian capital  is expected to take eight days with the eventual aim of cutting transport time from India to Europe down from between 30 and 40 days  to 15.
The corridor is just one of a number of international transport routes aimed at linking Asia to Europe that are under development. While China’s President Xi Jinping has stolen much of the limelight with his ‘One Belt One Road’ initiative and his symbolic appropriation of the historic east-west Silk Road trade routes, several north-south projects are also under development. On completion, the South West Corridor will link up with the intermodal North-South International Transport Corridor (ITC) that is due to connect the Indian Ocean and Persian Gulf to the Caspian Sea and beyond to North and Western Europe via the Russian Federation and offer an alternative to the sea routes through the Suez Canal which is being increasingly seen as a bottleneck.

Source: Rosbalt