Unlocking the Potential for Railways: A Railway Strategy for CAREC
Unlocking the Potential for Railways: A Railway Strategy for CAREC (2017-2030) serves as a guiding document for the long-term development of CAREC railways. The strategy was jointly developed by CAREC country representatives in cooperation with development partners, railway operators, stakeholders and experts. The strategy equips the region’s railways to better capture evolving trade flows and contribute to regional economic development.
Railway Sector Development in CAREC Countries
On 14 November 2018, Asian Development Bank (ADB) approved a knowledge and support technical assistance (KSTA) project that aims to accelerate the development of the railway subsector in CAREC countries through (i) railway transport market research, (ii) project identification and preparation, (iii) knowledge sharing, and (iv) capacity development.
Increasing emphasis on railways for regional connectivity, CAREC countries formulated the CAREC Railway Strategy 2017–2030—endorsed at the 15th CAREC Ministerial Conference in 2016—to serve as a guiding document for the sound, long-term development of CAREC railways. The strategy formulates a number of priorities for three primary efforts: (i) develop effective rail infrastructure, (ii) develop robust commercial capabilities, and (iii) improve legal and regulatory frameworks.
The KSTA will support CAREC countries in the implementation of these priorities. To help formulate bankable investment projects, the KSTA will (i) provide swift mobilization of expertise to screen project options, (ii) perform prefeasibility studies or validate existing feasibility studies, and (iii) support the prioritization and conceptualization of investments.
To support the policy side of sector actions, the KSTA will develop knowledge products and conduct events in common areas of interest in sector reform and commercialization, such as state-owned enterprise restructuring, financial restructuring, asset management, performance-based contracting, business development, and border-crossing facilitation.
The KSTA, which will be implemented from 2019 to 2021, has a budget of $2 million, of which (i) $1 million will be financed on a grant basis by the People’s Republic of China Poverty Reduction and Regional Cooperation Fund and (ii) $1 million will be financed on a grant basis by the United Kingdom Fund for Asia Regional Trade and Connectivity under the Regional Cooperation and Integration Financing Partnership Facility—both administered by ADB.
CAREC Designated Railway Corridors
The CAREC Designated Railway Corridors serve as a framework for developing rail infrastructure in the region.