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The other major railway route is the China to Iran line. Branching off from the London line after Khorgos, the railway line traverses Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan passing through a number of historical cities such as Samarkand and Bukhara before it crosses into Iran. China’s demand for energy has led the country to scour the region for suppliers. The first freight train from China arrived in Tehran last year, completing the 10,400km journey in 14 days. Tehran, the most populous city in Western Asia, hopes the rail services will turn Iran into a major Eurasian trade hub. The rail links and close cooperation with Tehran will provide China greater access to the oil-rich Middle East as well as the Gulf countries.