Suleyman Karaman, chairman of the Board of Turkish State Railways (TCDD), stated that Turkish rail transport corridor would connect Beijing to London with the Marmaray project.
Evaluating the developments in the Turkish railway sector to Anadolu Agency, Karaman said $26 billion investment was made to railways in the last decade in Turkey.
Reminding that Turkey ranked 6th in Europe and 8th in the world in having a high-speed train line, Karaman stated that once the Eskisehir-Istanbul high-speed train line was established it would connect Asia and Europe continents with Marmaray, travelling 60 metres below the sea. Marmaray is expected to be complete by September 30, 2013 and Ankara Istanbul travel time would be reduced to three hours, Karaman said.
Karaman also stated that Ankara-Sivas, Ankara-Bursa and Ankara-Izmir high-speed train lines were under construction, expected to be completed by 2023, adding that ten thousand kilometres of high-speed train lines were planned to be built in Turkey by 2023.
"'Iron Silk Road' will be established with the Kars-Tbilisi-Baku Railway Project with the cooperation of Turkey, Azarbaijan and Georgia. This project will allow to reach as far as Middle Asia and China. Kars-Tbilisi-Baku Railway Project will serve as a railway corridor and it is aimed to carry 6.5 million tonnes of load between Europe and Asia in the first year.
Turkey will not only make a revolution in the transport system but it will also provide an alternative route to Middle East, Middle Asia and Far East, considered as the heart of world economy and energy sources. Railway transport corridor will connect Beijing to London with the Marmaray Project," Karaman said.
Also touching on the Silk Wind Block Train Project, Karaman said the block train implementation would make railway an important alternative for domestic and foreign carriage of goods.
Reporting by Ziya Altunbas