Tajik Railways Launches a Bi-Weekly Service from Khujand to Moscow
Wednesday 28 November 2012
DUSHANBE (Asia-Plus) – Tajik Railways has launched a bi-weekly service from Khujand (خجند), the capital of the northern Sughd (سغد) province, to Moscow.
- Tajik Railways Locomotive n° TMZ2-1792 shunting the yard adjacent to the main railway station in Dushanbe.
(© Stephen Willetts)
An official source at Tajik Railways says that an additional train has been launched on that rail route in connection with a seasonal increase in passenger traffic from Moscow to Tajikistan and the additional train will run between Khujand and Moscow until the end.
“Further operation of the bi-weekly service on this route will depend on passenger traffic,” the source added.
The state run Tajik railroad network totals only 950 km, of which 680 km are principal links, all of it 1,520 mm (4 ft 11 5⁄6 in) broad gauge. The system connects the main urban centres of western Tajikistan with points in neighbouring Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan. In 2000 a new line connected the southern cities of Qurghonteppa and Kulob. At present Tajik Railways offers two routes to the Russian Federation (Dushanbe-Moscow and Kulob-Moscow) and two domestic routes (Dushanbe-Konibodom and Dushanbe-Pakhtaobod). The Khujand-Saratov (Russia) route has been suspended due to low passenger traffic.
Currently, Tajikistan’s rolling-stock includes some 2,000 cargo cars, 424 passenger carriages and 55 diesel locomotives.
Passenger transit through Tajikistan has been hindered by periodic failures of Tajik Railways to pay transit tariffs and by safety issues. A recent agreement between the heads of state of Pakistan, Tajikistan, and Afghanistan will modernize parts of Tajikistan’s rail system to allow more trade between Central Asian countries.