By Leman Mammadova
The projects implemented by Azerbaijan and Iran designed to integrate regional transport networks will increase the competitiveness of International North-South Transport Corridor as well as deepen the relations in the regional format.
Ramin Guluzade, Azerbaijani Minister of Transport, Communications and High Technologies, and Mohammad Eslami, Iranian Minister of Roads and Urban Development, discussed the issues of joint transport projects implementation on the sidelines of Elecomp exhibition held in Iranian capital Tehran.
The sides discussed the construction of the highway between Iranian and Azerbaijani Astara regions, a joint border bridge and a new cargo terminal to link the network of motorways of Azerbaijan with the Iranian project Rasht-Astara.
Eslami stressed the importance of the Astara (Iran) - Astara (Azerbaijan) railway project in terms of its role in the North-South corridor and increasing transit revenues of the two countries.
North-South transport route envisages connecting India with the Middle East and the Caucasus, Central Asia and Europe. The project aims to increase the efficiency of transport communications in the organization of freight and passenger transportation, to assist in increasing the volume of international transportations.
Within the North-South corridor, Astara-Rasht-Qazvin railway project envisages the construction of a new railway line in Iran, which will connect Astara, Azerbaijan to the Iranian cities of Astara, Rasht and Qazvin as well as the reconstruction of an existing railway in Azerbaijan.
Eslami also noted that Iran-Azerbaijan Joint Transport Committee meeting will be held in Tehran, and described it as a good opportunity to remove barriers to the development of transport links. However, he did not specify the dates of the meeting.
Guluzade, in turn, said that the relations between Azerbaijan and Iran in the field of ICT, as well as other sectors of the economy, are developing perfectly.
He added that Azerbaijan will do everything possible to improve economic and trade relations with Iran.
Guluzade invited Iranian companies to take part in the upcoming BakuTel exhibition in Baku, as well as to work in Azerbaijan.
Current agenda of ICT cooperation between Azerbaijan and Iran includes telecommunications and postal cooperation, intensification of experience exchange, regulation of radio frequencies in the border areas, cyber security, space industry, and Iranian use of satellite resources, mobile communications and internet services.
Guluzade also attended the quadripartite meeting of sectoral ministers of Azerbaijan, Iran, Russia and Turkey. The sides exchanged views on the possibilities of multilateral cooperation in the innovation and ICT sector.
It was decided to organize mutual visits and joint activities in order to develop links between innovative startups and ICT companies.
It’s noteworthy that $2 million investment was initially made by Azerbaijan, Iran, Russia and Turkey to establish a consortium to strengthen startups' work and incomes.
Guluzade also held bilateral meetings with Mohammad-Javad Azari Jahromi, Iranian Minister of Information and Communications Technology, and Konstantin Noskov, Russian Minister of Digital Development, Communications and Mass Media, during which issues of mutual interest were discussed.
Azerbaijani delegation also participated in the Iranian Digital Economic Forum. The event was attended by Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, the ICT ministers of a number of countries, high-ranking representatives of industry-specific international and regional organizations.
Leman Mammadova is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow her on Twitter: @leman_888
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