Uzbekistan is a double landlocked country; however, with three Central Asia Regional Economic Cooperation (CAREC) corridors crossing its territory, it is a key transit country for trade in Central Asia. Roads and railways are the dominant modes of transport, with railways vital for the bulk haul of minerals and freight, and intercity passenger services in urban areas.
In October 2007, the government of Turkmenistan signed a multilateral agreement with Kazakhstan and Iran to construct a north–south railway line to promote regional trade, cooperation, and integration.
The interior regions of the People’s Republic of China (PRC) have not benefited as much from economic growth and reforms as the east coast. In fact, the gap in economic and social development had been increasing in the years leading to the project appraisal in 2005. Inadequate transport infrastructure and high logistics costs were among the key constraints.