Iraq will soon sign an agreement with Turkey to join a $17-billion project for the construction of a trans-Iraq rail line to the Turkish border, an official was quoted on Tuesday as saying.

The expected agreement is a result of recent talks between Baghdad and Ankara about the planned rail and motorway which will start from the Southern Iraqi Faw Port and pass through 10 governorates in the Arab country towards the Northern border with Turkey.

“We expect to finalise an agreement soon with Turkey regarding that project, which will turn Iraq into a key transit centre for goods between the Middle East and Europe via Turkey,” said Nassir Al-Assadi, Transport Adviser to Prime Minister Mohammed Al-Sudani.

Assadi, quoted by the official daily Alsabah, did not elaborate on Turkey’s role in the project, dubbed ‘The Development Road’ but Baghdad has been locked in talks with Turkey, Iran, Syria and GCC countries for possible funding of the project.

(Writing by Nadim Kawach; Editing by Anoop Menon)


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