Ukraine and Iran have agreed to launch a test freight train through the territory of Georgia and Azerbaijan. The train will transport agricultural products, particularly grain, to Iran. The train may depart from Ukraine in the summer of 2017, the CFTS portal reports, citing the Ukrainian Ministry of Infrastructure.
The agreement to launch of the train was announced after Ukraine’s Minister of Infrastructure Volodymyr Omelian met with a delegation from Iran in Kyiv on 19 April.
"This is a very promising area of cooperation for both countries. Ukraine must develop new international transport corridors in order to become a reliable transit bridge between the countries of Europe, Asia, and the East," the minister said.
According to him, the train could depart as early as next summer. He also urged the Iranian side to consider the possibility of transporting Iranian crude oil to Ukraine and the possibility of building an oil refinery in Ukraine.
As the CFTS portal earlier reported, Ukraine already sent a test train to China in early 2016. The test container train, which traveled on the route Ukraine-Georgia-Azerbaijan-Kazakhstan-China, remains the only train that Ukraine has operated on the Trans-Caspian route.
As reported earlier, Iranian representatives in the Ukrainian-Iranian Intergovernmental Commission for Economic and Trade Cooperation have sent the draft of an agreement on development of the Persian Gulf-Black Sea transport route to their Ukrainian counterparts and invited Ukraine to participate in this transport corridor.
Following talks during the period of 9-10 March 2017, a Memorandum of Mutual Understanding on cooperation between ports was approved for signing at the level of Ukrainian and Iranian port authorities in the near future.