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Kazakhstan postpones construction of new high-speed railway

2 November 2013 17:30
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Kazakhstan postpones construction of new high-speed railway

ASTANA. November 2. KAZINFORM The project for construction of a high-speed railway from Astana to Almaty was temporarily postponed, due to its high cost, Almaty Mayor Akhmetzhan Yesimov said.

"The project for construction of a high-speed railway Astana-Almaty is costly and its implementation was temporarily postponed," the mayor said speaking at a briefing at the Central Communications Service under the President of Kazakhstan in Astana on Friday.

In 2011, Kazakhstan began to develop a feasibility study for the construction of a new Astana-Almaty railway over which Talgo high-speed trains would run. The project was being developed by Chinese experts jointly with the Kazakh Company Transproject-K and French company Systra SA was attracted for rendering consultative services.

It was planned that the total length of the new railway line will be 1011 kilometres. The new way will be shorter by about 300-400 kilometres. Currently, Talgo arrives from one capital to another in about 13 hours. And afterwards a new railway line will be constructed, reducing the time to five hours. The cost of the project in 2011 was not announced.

However, in April 2013, Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev stated that this project needs serious additional analysis.

"I would like to have such a railway, but my study of this issue in China showed that firstly this is a very costly project. Second, this railway requires permanent attention and repair, Kazinform refers to

At the same time, the passenger flow between Astana and Almaty doesn't provide the required profitability of this railway. Therefore, this idea requires a thorough calculation before we begin the financing," the Kazakh president said.

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