PM Yıldırım: New train line to connect Turkey, Europe


Turkey will begin construction on a new high-speed train project that will be part of the Trans-European transportation corridor, Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım said yesterday.

Speaking at a joint news conference with his Bulgarian counterpart Boyko Borisov in western Turkey's İzmir, Yildirim said, "We are starting the new high-speed train project in a few months, which is Turkey's part of the Trans-European transportation corridor."

He said the new train line will be 233 kilometers long, going all the way from Istanbul to western Turkey's Edirne.

Yıldırım added that the train line would boost the historic Silk Road - linking Europe, Balkans, Anatolian territories, Middle East and the Far East.

"At the same time, this link will provide transportation corridors towards Europe over Turkey and Bulgaria," the prime minister said.

Yıldırım pointed out that the relations between Turkey and Bulgaria - in the areas of economy, culture, tourism, especially investment and energy transportation - are improving with every passing day each day. "The foundation of the relations was built on a win-win basis," he said.

The prime minister noted that the trade volume between the two countries has also increased, and added that Turkey sees Bulgaria as a strategic partner in bilateral trade.

"The fact that the Trans-Anatolian Natural Gas Pipeline Project (TANAP), which we are to open today, will continue over Bulgaria to other European countries is a situation we adopt as a principle. We will carry 10 billion cubic meters of Azeri gas to European markets annually through TANAP. It will boost regional welfare and ensure Europe and Balkan's energy supply security. We will further improve the transit corridors in Bulgaria by road and rail connections."

According to the Turkish Ministry of Transport, Maritime Affairs and Communications, the Halkali-Kapikule railroad project will connect the Iron Silk Road route's Turkish part with Europe. The high-speed trains will operate at a speed of 200 kph.

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