MONGOLIA, Mongolia (AP) The cheapest way to travel in Mongolia is a train.
The country has been a major transit hub for freight and passengers since it joined the Eurasian Union in 2004.
But that has led to an unprecedented train rush and a shortage of trains.
A train ticket from Mongolia to Krasnoyarsk is about 20 times more expensive than it used to be, said Peter Gormley, who operates the Mongolia Railway Booking Service.
“We’ve got a big shortfall of trains,” he said.
Mongolia is the world’s second-most populous country with a population of more than 9 million.
In the past two decades, the country’s rail infrastructure has become increasingly outdated, said Gormey.
Railway officials say there are still about 300 train operators operating, but many are in bankruptcy and need loans.
Some people travel for short distances, others to avoid crowds of people, and still others to make ends meet.
Many of the new operators have limited operating experience and do not have a clear plan for how to operate the countrys train network.
Gormey said he has had to shut down several of his competitors.
He said the government was making it difficult to get people to use Mongolian railways.
Most Mongolian train operators have no plans to retire or close their doors, Gormay said.
Instead, they have shifted focus to building a network of new lines.
This week, the Mongolian Railway Board (MBR) announced a plan to build two new lines linking the western Mongolian town of Dzhegzhan to the provincial capital of Borys-Nizhny Tagil, a major crossroads.
Officials said they would build the line in 2019, and a third line connecting the western and eastern cities of Yuden and Gondwanalik would open in 2021.
There is a shortage in trains, with a shortage that is expected to grow, said Mongolia Railway Association President Andrey Krivoshvili.
The government is also considering the possibility of building a new line to the east to connect the city of Danggang with Gondwanggang.
Borussia-Mitte has plans to build a railway line linking the city and the region, and the U.S. government is considering building a line from California to Mongolia.
At the moment, there is a huge train shortage in Mongolia, said David Rennison, a former train operator for Mongolia Railways.
Since Mongolia joined the E.U. in 2004, Mongolia has built a network that spans five continents and more than 100 countries.
It is the fastest-growing railway in Asia and the second fastest in the world, after Japan.
More than 80 percent of Mongolia’s landmass is in the country.
Transportation in Mongolia has become so cheap that many families have no need for cars, but most still use bicycles, motorcycles and horseback riding, said Krivos.