Turkey’s president on Sunday welcomed the completion of the Samsun-Sivas Railway Line’s modernization, saying the railway will significantly contribute to logistics transportation.

“This railway line, which opens the Black Sea to Anatolia commercially, will give a whole new momentum to logistics transport. The investment will strengthen Samsun’s position as a regional hub and offer economic and business opportunities to our citizens living along the line,” said Recep Tayyip Erdogan, speaking at a ceremony in northern Samsung province to mark the project’s completion.

“Within the scope of the project, the 431-kilometer railway line between Samsun and Sivas was renewed with all its infrastructure and superstructure,” Erdogan said, adding all of Turkey’s rail infrastructure has now been modernized.

Noting that the length of bridges and viaducts in the country has increased from 311 kilometers to 660 kilometers and the number of airports from 26 to 56, Erdogan said the total annual passenger capacity of the country’s airports has risen to 318 million people from 60 million.

Turkey ranks eighth in the world and sixth in Europe in terms of high-speed train operation, he said.

The president said that Turkey has also built high-speed train lines where freight and passenger transportation can be carried out together.

With strategic projects such as the Baku-Tbilisi-Kars railway, Turkey succeeded in establishing an uninterrupted railway connection from London to China, he added.

* Writing by Seda Sevencan in Ankara

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