Pakistan’s Ministry of Railways and the Government of China have agreed in principle to form a consortium to carry out the feasibility study of the planned joint venture rail service between the two countries, Pakistan’s railways minister has said.

The study will cover a 750km section from Havelian, which is already linked to Pakistan’s rail network, to Khunjrab, crossing over the Mansehra district and the Karakoram Highway.

A new 350km track from China’s Kashgar terminus to Pakistan’s Khunjerab Pass will link the two countries.

The railway would initially provide freight service and would be later upgraded to carry passengers as well.

The countries are also seeking a loan from international organisations for the project.