ISTANBUL, Oct. 21 (Xinhua) -- Turkey's railway summit kicked off on Wednesday in Istanbul with a focus on security, technology, and the future of high-speed trains.
The summit was inaugurated at the historic Sirkeci Railway Station on the European side of the city with a hybrid model, having some sessions online and others on the spot due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The summit, which will go until Saturday, would also address the experiences and reform efforts of several countries that achieved significant progress in rail transportation, according to a press release.
"We have been creating commercial lines with multi-model transportation routes that connect our geography, located at the heart of the New Silk Road, to the rest of the world," the Turkish Transport and Infrastructure Minister Adil Karaismailoglu said at the opening ceremony.
Turkey has invested a total of 169.2 billion Turkish liras (about 21.57 billion U.S. dollars) in the development of the railway sector between 2003 and 2020, Karaismailoglu noted.
Currently, the country possesses 11,590 km long conventional railway lines and 1,213 km of high-speed train tracks.
China Railway Construction Corporation Limited and China National Machinery Import and Export Corporation, in partnership with two Turkish companies, had built some sections of the Ankara-Istanbul high-speed line, which was completed in 2014.