Turkey plans to spend nearly $12bn over the next ten years to develop its high-speed rail network.

Of this, $10.4bn would be spent to build 2,297km of high-speed rail projects and the remainder on 74 high-speed vehicles, Turkish State Railways unit Tuvasas’s board director Muammer Kantarci said.

Railroads carry only 3% of passenger traffic and 5% of freight traffic in the country and the investment is aimed at boosting rail transportation, according to Reuters.

Some of the planned projects include links between Istanbul and Edirne, near the Bulgarian and Greek borders; Ankara and Izmir on the Aegean coast; and the industrial hub of Bursa with the nearby town of Osmaneli.

The country opened its first high-speed railroad, the 250kmph 245km railway from capital Ankara to Eskisehir, in March 2009.