By Matthew Gayle.
The Iraqi government has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Romanian railcar producer Astra to establish a joint railway company based in Iraq.
According to Al-Shorfa, the Iraqi-Romanian company, which will specialize in producing trains, will be based in al-Samawa, southern Iraq. The company will also focus on rehabilitating the train infrastructure throughout Iraq in co-ordination with the Ministry of Transportation during the initial stages of the company's work.
Economic Advisor to the Iraq government, Salam al-Quraishi, explained that after four years the company will begin building a railway network from Basra to western Iraq, which will also pass through other Iraqi provinces.
Procedures for establishing the company will begin after a work team from both countries is formed. The work team will begin the planning for the company's technical, financial and legal tasks, which al-Quraishi said should be completed within 30 days.