Unlocking the Potentials of Railways in CAREC
The 15th CAREC Ministerial Conference endorsed “Unlocking the Potential of Railways: A Railway Strategy for CAREC (2017-2030).” The CAREC Railway Working Group and development partners have worked for the last two years to formulate the railway strategy.
The CAREC railway strategy envisions rail transport to become a mode of choice for trade: quick, efficient, accessible for customers, and easy to use throughout the region. It intends to equip the region's railways to better capture evolving trade flows and contribute to regional economic development by (i) improving rail and multimodal infrastructure; and (ii) commercializing and reforming railway activities.
The CAREC program will support the implementation of the Railway Strategy by serving as a platform to maximize partnership between and among railway operators, private sector, governments and development partners, which will serve as a blueprint for the sound, long-term development of railways in the CAREC region.
The CAREC Railway Designated Railway Corridors serve as framework for developing rail infrastructure in the region.
10 Things to Know about the CAREC Railway Strategy
- The Transport and Trade Facilitation Strategy 2020 (TTFS 2020), endorsed by the CAREC member countries in 2013, recognizes the importance of railways in completing the six CAREC multimodal corridor network. Given the large investments needed in railway development, the TTFS 2020 also noted that the CAREC railway network development will continue beyond the 2020 planning horizon.
- Unlocking the Potential of Railways: A Railway Strategy for CAREC (2017-2030, endorsed by the CAREC countries during the 15th Ministerial Conference (October 2016 in Islamabad, Pakistan), was formulated to serve as a guiding document for the sound, long-term development of CAREC railways.
- The Strategy supports ADB’s Sustainable Transport Initiative-Operational Plan which sets a target for railways to reach 25% of ADB’s transport sector lending by 2020.
- The CAREC railway strategy envisions rail transport to become a mode of choice for trade: quick, efficient, accessible for customers, and easy to use throughout the region.
- The Strategy intends to equip the region’s railways to better capture evolving trade flows and contribute to regional economic development.
- The Strategy plans to achieve its vision by (1) improving rail and multimodal infrastructure; and (2) commercializing and reforming railway activities.
- The Strategy’s strategic priorities are: (i) developing an effective rail infrastructure; (ii) developing robust commercial capabilities of railway operators; and (iii) improving legal and regulatory framework of railway operation.
- Implementing the Strategy requires a set of robust arrangements addressing money (financing), people (capacity), and technology. Cooperation among railway operators, governments, and development partners is needed to effectively implement the Strategy.
- Inputs required between 2017 and 2030 includes (i) at least $10 billion in financing in the short-term, and $38 billion in the long-term for railway projects; (ii) new financing partnerships and approaches, e.g. PPP, infrastructure bonds and guarantees; (iii) technical assistance of at least $13.9 million to conduct capacity building, promotion of region-wide common technical standards, tariff and costing benchmarks and feasibility studies; and (iv) knowledge partnerships with regional and international development partners.
- The Strategy will be implemented by the CAREC Railway Working Group supported by the development partners. The CAREC program can be used as a platform to maximize partnership between and among railway operators, private sector, governments, and development partners.
Data, information, and basic analysis of CAREC railways are available here.