The CAREC Programme: Corridor 6

Alexandra Colcer

Corridor 6 connects Europe and the Middle East with South Asia (Afghanistan, Kazakhstan, Pakistan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan). It unfolds from North to South, linking the Russian Federation with Iranian and Pakistani ports.

  • Corridor 6a includes both road and rail routes, and links the northwest coast of the Caspian Sea to the Gwadar port of Pakistan, crossing the Russian cities Krasnyi Yar (road) and Aksaraskaya (railway), the Kazakh cities Kurmangazy (road) and Ganyushking (Uzbekistan), the Uzbek cities Karapalkastan (road and rail), Bukhara, Termez, the Afghan cities Hairatan, Mazar-e-Sharif, Kandahar and the Pakistani cities Chaman, Surab, Gwadar.
  • Corridor 6b also includes road and rail routes, passing through almost the same countries as the previous one: it starts from Russia, more precisely from Novomarkovka (road) / Kos Aral (rail), reaching Kazakhstan in Zhaisan (road and rail), Aral, Saryagash / Yallama (rail) and Zhibek Zholy (road), and then Uzbekistan in Keles (rail) and Gisht Kuprik (road), Termez / Airatom (rail and road), continuing towards Afghanistan – Hairatan (rail and road), Islam Qala, and then Iran (Dogharoun) and again Afghanistan (Kandahar) to end in Pakistan – Chaman, Basima and Gwadar.
  • Corridor 6c has the same starting point as 6b and it includes the same Russian and Kazakh cities, and also some Uzbek cities: from Khavast (Uzbekistan) it reaches Tajikistan, through Istaravshan, Kurgonteppa and Panji Poyon; it then enters Afghanistan through Shirkan Bandar, Kabul, Torkham (road) and, finally, it arrives in Pakistan, where it passes through the following urban localities: Landi Kotal (road), Lahore, Muzaffargarh and ends in Karachi port.
  • Corridor 6d connects Russia (Krasnyi Yar – road and Aksaraskaya – railway) to Pakistani port Gwadar via Kurmangazy (road) and Ganyushking (rail) in Kazakhstan, Bereket, Ashgabat and Mary in Turkmenistan, Herat (Afghanistan) Kandahar (Afghanistan), Chaman, Surab and Gwadar (Pakistan).
  • Corridor 6e is a railway extension linking Kazakhstan to Iran via Turkmenistan.


Source: CAREC Transport and Trade Facilitation Strategy 2020, pp. 54

Corridor 6 includes 10,600 km of roads, 7,200 km of railways and 5 logistics centers, being a north-south connecting corridor with strategic importance as it connects landlocked areas with port areas.

There are thirty-eight projects developed along this corridor: six in Afghanistan, three in Kazakhstan, fourteen in Pakistan, six in Tajikistan, one in Turkmenistan, and eight in Uzbekistan. The projects aim at building roads along with the reconstruction of a railroad and a tunnel in Afghanistan, as well as rehabilitation and road and highway construction in Kazakhstan. Pakistan benefits from construction and overtaking of highways and railway rehabilitation, while in Tajikistan projects imply the creation of a logistic center and modernization of roads. The project in Turkmenistan aims at building the Atamurat-Ymamnazar-Aqina railway line. In Uzbekistan, projects concern rail electrification, road reconstruction and the reconstruction of the Termez Airport Complex.

Some of the implemented projects include:

  • Rehabilitation and reconstruction of 113 km of road in Tajikistan, from Ayni to Panjakent district and the Uzbekistan border;
  • Construction of a 75-kilometer railway line in Afghanistan, with associated support infrastructure and facilities such as an upgraded marshaling yard and railway station at Hairatan, railway station and transshipment facilities at Mazar-e-Sharif, signaling and telecommunication systems, and safety facilities;
  • Improvement of 131 kilometers of the A-380 highway in Uzbekistan, a 1,204 kilometer road that runs from the Kazakh border in Uzbekistan’s north toward Afghanistan and Turkmenistan in the south;
  • Rehabilitation of the 140.3-kilometer highway section from Mazar-e-Sharifa to Dara-i-Suf, and the 98.9 km Bamian–Yakawlang road, which comprise the North–South Corridor connecting the ring road through central Afghanistan;
  • Rehabilitation of the national highway network which will connect the central areas of Afghanistan to the ring road;
  • Reconstruction and improvement of the 210-kilometer Andkhoy–Qaisar section of the national primary ring road in Afghanistan;
  • Rehabilitation of seven regional airports in Afghanistan — Bamyan, Chaghcharan, Faizabad, Farah, Maimana, Qalai-Naw, and Zaranj — including runway and stopway reconstruction, building new taxiways and aprons, constructing or renovating passenger terminals, providing water supply, sewerage, and power supply system, reconstructing access roads and car parks, providing airport maintenance plant, equipment, and airport maintenance building;
  • Repair and rehabilitation of the 392-kilometer section of Afghanistan’s Ring Road from Pul-e-Khumri through Naibabad, Mazar-e-Sharif, and Sheberghan to Andkhoy;
  • Repair and rehabilitation of a 55 km link to the Uzbekistan border from Naibabad to Hairatan (in Afghanistan);
  • Rehabilitation and reconstruction of damaged transmission lines and substations in the northern provinces of Afghanistan, involving construction of a 220-kilovolt (kV) power line from Hairatan at the Uzbekistan border through Naibabad to Pul-e-Khumri, construction of a 110 kV line from Naibabad to Mazar-e-Sharif, and construction of substations in Khulm and Pul-e-Khumri

Ongoing projects include:

  • Improvement of the connectivity between the capital Dushanbe and Kurgonteppa, which are two major cities and economic hubs in Tajikistan;
  • Construction of a 64-kilometer four-lane, access-controlled motorway connecting Shorkot and Khanewal in Punjab Province (Pakistan), which is the last missing section of the national motorway M-4 to be constructed;
  • Reconstruction of about 300 kilometer road section between the capitals and administration centers of Aktobe and Artyrau Provinces in western Kazakhstan and rehabilitate about 135 km connector road between Mukur and Kulsary also in Kazakhstan;
  • Reconstruction of the remaining 108-kilometer gap from Beharak to Eshkashim (Afghanistan) in the northeastern corridor, which starts at city of Kunduz and connects to the border-crossing point with Tajikistan at Eshkashim;
  • Modernization of Sapary–Jalalabad, Sharan–Angoor Ada, and Chan-e-Anjir–Gereshk sections (188 kilometers) in Afghanistan;
  • Rehabilitation of 90 kilometers of the Qaisar–Bala Murghab section of the Herat–Andkhoy road and construction of approximately 143 kilometers of the Bala Murghab–Laman section (all in Afghanistan);
  • Improvement of 145 km (Bagramy-Sapary, Jabul Saraj-Nijrab; and Faizabad-Beharak sections) of reconstructed, rehabilitated, and appropriately maintained roads; operation and maintenance of 75 km of new railway line, loops and stations between Hairatan and Mazar-e-Sharif;
  • Electrification of the 140 km Marakand – Karshi railway section (Uzbekistan) completed;
  • Rehabilitation of 90 km of the Qaisar–Bala Murghab section of the Herat–Andkhoy road and construct approximately 143 km of the Bala Murghab–Laman section (all in Afghanistan);
  • Upgrading and reconstruction of road sections of about 788.5 kilometers in Kyzylorda oblast in Kazakhstan, excluding Kyzylorda bypass; and upgrading and reconstruction of road sections of about 273.4 km in South Kazakhstan oblast from Kyzylorda oblast border to Shymkent, including the bypasses to Kyzylorda and Shymkent;
  • Building the 143 kilometer section from Bala Murghab to Leman (Afghanistan).

The total cost of the projects is over USD 5 billion, and the financiers are Asian Development Bank, World Bank, Afghanistan Infrastructure Trust Fund, Clean Energy Fund, Department for International Development, European Union, OPEC, the governments of involved states, Japan Fund for Poverty Reduction, Kreditanstalt for Wiederaufbau, and United Nations Office for Project Services.





Published by Chamber of Commerce and Industry Romania-Turkmenistan

The Chamber of Commerce and Industry Romania-Turkmenistan (CCIRom-Tkm) is a non-governmental organization of public utility, autonomous and apolitical, founded in 2009 to promote the economic cooperation between Romania, Turkmenistan and other countries in the Central Asian region.

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