The Iranian regime is trying to escape its economic crisis by opening up to neighboring countries, especially Saudi Arabia, by stopping the militias from launching attacks on neighboring countries.
On the same path, Russia began cross-border economic projects that included the participation of both the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and Iran, which resulted in the first Russian container train entering the Iranian border on its way to Saudi territory.
This came after Saudi Arabia signed an agreement with the Iranian regime last March in Beijing under Chinese sponsorship with the aim of defusing tension in the region and stopping Iran from supporting terrorist movements spread in Arab countries.
The Fars news agency, which is affiliated with the Iranian Revolutionary Guard, reported that the Russian train carried 36 cargo containers, and according to its pre-prepared itinerary, it entered Iran from the Incheh Borun border crossing located between Iran and Turkmenistan, which neighbors Iran to the northeast. The train ran on the north-south corridor, which is a new trade route that competes with traditional international maritime trade routes.
Russia’s South Urals Railways plans to send two container trains per month along the north-south transport corridor, starting in the third quarter of this year.
This project is expected to contribute to reducing tensions between the participating countries, especially between Iran and Saudi Arabia, because of the economic opportunities it entails in reducing the period of transporting goods by several days and increasing the chances of sending more goods from the South Urals region in southern Russia towards the Arab Gulf countries via railway, reducing customs duties and thus further reducing the fees for sending goods via the north-south corridor by nearly half.
Last June, media reports revealed the launch of the first container train from the Russian Chelyabinsk freight station heading to Saudi Arabia, passing through the territories of Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan and Iran. The first train shipment included dozens of containers loaded with energy-related equipment as well as metals.
Saudi Arabia was able to stop the launching of cross-border missiles by the Iranian-backed Houthi militia after the Beijing agreement in March, paving the way for holding Yemeni-Yemeni dialogue sessions to resolve a number of outstanding issues as a prelude to a comprehensive political solution in Yemen.
Both Tehran and Riyadh also joined the BRICS group during the conclusion of the group’s summit in South Africa last month with the aim of supporting economic relations in a more independent framework from Western powers. The Collective Security Treaty Organization also invited representatives of Saudi Arabia and Iran as observers in the organization’s maneuvers that will take place in Belarus, a close ally of Russia.