Northern Railways (NR) has received a preliminary economic assessment (PEA) for a rail link between the Mongolian Ovoot Tolgoi mining complex and the Arts Suuri port on the Russian-Mongolian border.
NR is a rail subsidiary of Aspire Mining, which focusses on developing railway infrastructure and stimulating economic development in Mongolia.
The PEA from Perfect Road Project has validated the construction of the 238.6km expansion, which is to be built with a $581.82m investment. It is expected to connect to the planned rail development in the Tuva region, southern Russia.
The cost of investment for the extension is in line with a previous scoping study conducted in 2015.
A number of options to further minimise the cost of construction have also been included in the PEA.
Aspire Mining executive chairman David Paull said: “The delivery of this preliminary economic assessment provides further confirmation of the viability of the Northern Rail Corridor.
“The company has provided this PEA to the Mongolian Ministry of Roads and Transport and Mongolian rail operator UBTZ Railways to provide further justification to proceed to implement the Ovoot to Arts Suuri rail project as part of the Northern Rail Corridor.”
The Northern Rail Corridor is a joint initiative of the governments of Mongolia, China and Russia.
It has the potential to become one of the fastest, lowest cost rail routes to connect North Eastern China, Mongolia, Russia and Europe, thereby improving regional trade and offering additional economic benefits.