Afghan railway workers to be trained in Turkmenistan

Afghan Railway Authority (ARA) workers will receive technical training in Turkmenistan, the Afghan Pajwok news agency reported.

According to the agency, three-month courses have been organized for 13 ARA employees.

It is reported that Afghanistan is trying to send as many students as possible to study in neighboring countries. The department hopes that in the future Afghan specialists will be able to independently manage rail transportation in the country.

At the moment, the project of the railway Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Tajikistan (TAT) is being implemented. Turkmenistan completed the construction of its part of the TAT back in 2016. However, in 2017, a conflict arose between Turkmenistan and Tajikistan due to the reluctance of Dushanbe to build its own section of the railway.

On January 12, 2022, Asia-Plus reported that the Korea International Cooperation Agency could be looking for investments for the Tajik section of TAT.

In July 2019, Tajikistan and Afghanistan agreed on the route of the railway, and work began on a feasibility study for the Tajik section, which was scheduled to be completed by the end of the year.

In August 2021, the construction of the TAT was discussed by the Presidents of Turkmenistan Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov and Tajikistan Emomali Rahmon . However, immediately after that, the Taliban seized power in Afghanistan, with whom Dushanbe has tense relations.

As noted in the Wikipedia article, the main problems of building railways in Afghanistan are the difficult mountainous terrain of the country and the uncertainty with the gauge. All countries bordering Afghanistan have different gauges: in Iran it is 1435 mm, in the countries of Central Asia - 1520 mm, in Pakistan and India - mainly 1676 mm. The issue of gauge selection is especially important and is associated with the choice of the direction of economic and transport integration of the country.

Source: Chronicles of Turkmenistan