New passenger train Almaty-Khorgos launched 22 мая 2013, 12:13
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Almaty-1-Altynkol train at Altynkol station. Photo by Alisher Akhmetov©
Kazakhstan businessmen can now get to the International Near-Border Cooperation Center Khorgos by railroad, Tengrinews.kz reports.394-393 train of Turan-Express company cruising on route called Almaty-1 – Altynkol – Almaty-1 has already delivered the first passengers. The route’s purpose is to create conditions for businessmen and tourists to making duty-free purchases and meet with Chinese partners.
The 293km railroad crosses 5 administrative regions and connects Kazakhstan’s biggest economic center Almaty with Khorgos near-border cooperation area. “Khorgos is a bridge that is expected to be used for transportation of 3-4 million tons of freights this year. This will be beneficial for representatives of small and medium business from near-border regions and tourists from CIS,” Roman Botabekov, Director General of Turan Express Passenger Company said.
The train schedule is comfortably timed: passenger travel at night while sleeping and can spend the day shopping and meeting their partners. The route begins at Almaty-1 station, the train leaves at 11:20 p.m. The train arrives to Altynkol station at 05:45 a.m. the next day and then buses of the same company take the passengers to Khorgos, which is 10km from the station. In the evening the passenger board the same train to return to Almaty by the next morning.
The first train carried around 100 passengers in 7 carriages. In future the train will be expanded to 17-18 carriages. “The train can carry up to 900 people,” Botabekov said. The passengers can have up to 50kg of carry-on worth up to 1,500 Euro without customs payments. Besides making purchases, businessmen will have a chance to sign contracts directly with Chinese producers at the International Near-Border Cooperation Center Khorgos.
By Alisher Akhmetov