By Rasana Gasimova
Azerbaijan is China’s main trading partner in the South Caucasus. The country offers an attractive transport hub for the Chinese companies for delivery of goods to the West and thus, plays an important role in the implementation of the Trans-Caspian International Transport Route (TITR).
Recently, China decided to extend the route of the container unit train Xian (China)-Baku (Azerbaijan) to the Euroterminal Slawkow in Poland, Trend reports referring to ADY Container LLC, a subsidiary company of “Azerbaijan Railways” CJSC. This was expected, since according to the report, 90% of trains headed from China to Europe passed through the territory of Poland in 2018.
Test transportation from the Sławków terminal to Astara (Iran) was successful. Containers have accomplished the distance of 3396 km in nine days, said Natig Jafarov, the Director of “ADY Container”. Natig Jafarov added that the launch of container-block train en route Sławków-Baku-Central Asia is also expected.
The block train from the Chinese city of Xi'an arrived in Azerbaijan on July 6 this year. Xi'an-Baku block train will contribute significantly to the work of Azerbaijani and Chinese companies.
Agreement on the launch of container trains on the Trans-Caspian International Transport Route was signed in April 2019 during the second Belt and Road Forum in Beijing between ADY Container (a subsidiary of Azerbaijan Railways) and Xi'an Continental Bridge International Logistics Co. Ltd. Both companies plan to launch 30 container trains (2460TEU) in 2019.
China-initiated Belt and Road project aims at creating infrastructure and establishing links in 152 countries across the world. The project envisages the creation of trade corridor for direct deliveries of goods from East to West on preferential terms.
TITR has defined a single transit route with the principle of "single window". Within this project, container trains have been successfully transported through the route.
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