Tajikistan has begun construction on a railway line to connect the capital Dushanbe with the southern city of Khorgan-Tepe near the Afghan border. Once completed, the link could be used by US and NATO forces transporting goods to Afghanistan through the newly opened Northern Distribution Network.
President Imomali Rahmon officially launched the Vakhdat-Yavan section of the line, the Interfax news agency reported March 20. Construction on the $130 million project is drawing on funds from the Tajik state rail company, but the government hopes to attract foreign investors, the report added.
In January Tajikistan received $14.79 million grant to complete a highway running from Khorgan-Teppe to Nizhny Pyanzh at the Afghan border. The nearly 24-kilometer stretch of road will link into a $37-million, US-funded bridge across the Pyanzh River to Shir Khan Bandar in Afghanistan. The bridge was completed in 2007. In August 2008, a border post at Nizhny Pyanzh, built at a cost of $6.5-million by the US Army Corps of Engineers, was given to the Tajik Customs Service.