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EghtesadOnline: A new railroad has come on stream in northwest Iran. The 182-kilometer-long route was inaugurated by President Hassan Rouhani late Monday.

A total of 5.13 trillion rials (more than $39 million) worth of investments have been made in the project.

The railroad has the capacity to transport one million passengers and 1.5 million tons of cargo per year, IRNA reported.

A section of the route connecting Maragheh in East Azarbaijan to Mahabad in West Azarbaijan Province (85 km) was previously inaugurated in the fiscal 2013-14, according to Financial Tribune.

The Monday inauguration of the remaining 97 kilometers means the two northwestern Iranian provinces (East and West Azarbaijan) are now connected to the national rail network.

The project is said to have created 180 direct jobs. Reports say it will save 50 billion rials ($380,000) in fuel consumption every year.

As the government announced last year, the rail connection was among top five rail projects to link Iran's provincial capitals to the national rail network.

This counts as the third prioritized projects since two others (one connecting the capital to the city of Hamedan in the southwest and the other linking the former to Kermanshah located in the westernmost part of the country) were inaugurated in May 2017 and March 2018 respectively.

 

Iran Hassan Rouhani Urmia Railroad