The line will link the southwestern Khuzestan Province with Isfahan, through mountainous terrain.

The MoU was signed between Mapna president, Mr Abbas Aliabadi, and Mr Kheirollah Khademi, CEO of Construction and Transportation Infrastructure Development Company. The agreement was undersigned by the minister of roads and urban development, Mr Mohammad Eslami.

Mapna will construct the railway under an engineering-procurement-construction (EPC) scheme, and will be responsible for financing the project, which is worth an estimated €3bn.

The line is expected to halve the number of passenger and freight vehicles on the Ahwaz - Isfahan road, increasing safety while reducing traffic accidents and pollution. The line will also improve access to a cheaper supply of iron ore in central Iran for the steel industry in Khuzestan Province.

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