Wednesday, 17, July, 2024

The governments of Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan and China signed a trilateral agreement on cooperation in jointly promoting the railway project. The signing ceremony took place on June 6 in Beijing.

The document was signed by the Minister of Transport of Uzbekistan Ilkhom Makhkamov, the Minister of Transport and Communications of Kyrgyzstan, Tilek Tekebaev and the Chairman of the National Development and Reform Commission of China, Zheng Shanjie.

Before signing the agreement, video messages from the leaders of the three countries were heard.

President of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev emphasized that “the start of the implementation of this most important infrastructure project was a truly historical event.”

“This railway will become the shortest land route connecting China with our region. In the future, this road will allow access through the promising Trans-Afghan corridor to the large markets of the countries of South Asia and the Middle East,” the head of state noted.

In accordance with the agreement, the China-Kyrgyzstan-Uzbekistan railway will run along the Kashgar-Torugart-Makmal-Jalalabad-Andijan route.

As the presidential press service added, citing expert assessments, the annual volume of cargo transportation along this highway could reach up to 15 million tons, and the delivery time for goods to end consumers will be reduced by 7 days. In addition, a modern transit and logistics infrastructure, warehouses and terminals will be created.

The Cabinet of Ministers reported that an agreement on the early start of construction was reached during Sadyr Japarov’s state visit to China in May 2023.

The agreement, as noted by the press service of the Cabinet of Ministers of Kyrgyzstan, establishes the basic principles and mechanisms of cooperation between the three countries, including financing, construction, operation and maintenance of the railway.

The Ministry of Transport of Uzbekistan previously stated that the implementation of the project would expand the geography of trade and transportation from China through Uzbekistan to Turkey and further to Europe, as well as in the Gulf states.

The feasibility study for the construction of the 454-kilometer Uzbekistan-Kyrgyzstan-China railway was planned to be developed by June 1, 2023 (previously - July 1), but the work was completed ahead of schedule - in May. Construction work is scheduled to begin in October 2024.

Chairman of the Cabinet of Ministers/Chief of the Presidential Administration of Kyrgyzstan Akylbek Japarov noted in early December that the cost of the project is estimated at $6 billion, although 10 days earlier he announced an approximate cost of $3-5 billion. In April, Japarov already announced the amount of $8 billion.

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