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KTZ is building a new line to China to bypass congested Almaty

Construction of a new railway line in the Almaty area, in the southeast of Kazakhstan near the Chinese border. According to Kazakhstan Railways (KTZ), this line will create a bypass avoiding the Almaty station, currently considered "under strain". The new line will run for roughly 80 kilometres between Zhetygen and Kazybek Beka, north of Almaty.

The project entails the construction of 130 kilometres of railways, three switches, 13 bridges, five rail overpasses, and one road crossing. KTZ will purchase around 228,000 sleepers and 16,000 tons of rail to create the new infrastructure. Construction started on Tuesday 14 November, with the participation of Kazakhstan's Prime Minister Alikhan Smailov. (pictured)

"The new line will reduce the load on the Almaty hub by 40 per cent and reduce the cargo delivery time to 24 hours", the company specified. It is not clear how much this project will cost and how long it will take to commission it. This is not the only project aiming at enhancing the trade relationship between the two countries. When it comes to the Almaty area, KTZ is collaborating with China's Xi'an Dry Port to build a new rail logistics terminal to serve e-commerce volumes. In addition, a new consolidation centre was set up in the city by Chinese company Shandong Hi-Speed Group, the "Qilu" China Europe Express operator, and Atasu Group, which owns the Almaty rail terminal.

Moreover, the Moyynty-Dostyk line, leading from Kazakhstan into China via Alashankou, is currently being doubled and should be ready by 2025. KTZ said it is also planning to begin constructing a new railway from Ayagoz to Bakhty, which would create another rail border crossing between the two countries in the Kazakh northeast.

Image: Telegram. Kazakhstan Railways

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