By Rasana Gasimova
There is a scope for the provision of services related to the organization of cargo transportation by rail between Azerbaijan and India, the chairman of Azerbaijan Railways CJSC Javid Gurbanov said while meeting with the Indian Ambassador to Azerbaijan, Bawitlung Vanlalvawna.
During the meeting it was emphasized that India is closely cooperating with Azerbaijan in the framework of two international transport corridors - North-South and South-West.
Gurbanov stressed the importance of establishing trade relations between the seaports of Azerbaijan and India.
“The implementation of the North-South project is a historical fact, since it connects India with the Middle East, the Caucasus, Central Asia, Russia and European countries. This route is profitable from an economic point of view,” Gurbanov said.
It is forecasted that if the corridor operates at full capacity, it will facilitate the access of the region to the Persian Gulf and India and intensify trade links between the Caspian countries and the Black Sea ports. This route is optimal and economically feasible. The main advantage of the North-South International Transport Corridor compared to other routes is that its transit distance and time is two to three times less.
In turn, Bawitlung Vanlalvawna highly appreciated the work done by Azerbaijan in the implementation of international transport projects. He also noted that the Indian government has also taken important steps to improve the railways and to strengthen the North-South International Transport Corridor.
The North-South International Transport Corridor (INSTC) 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.
The Corridor was established in 2000 within the Intergovernmental Agreement between Russia, Iran and India. The main purpose of the agreement is to increase the efficiency of transport communications in the organization of freight and passenger transportation, to create conditions for member states to enjoy the international rail, automobile, sea, river and air transport services, to assist in increasing the volume of international transportation. The project envisages connecting India with the Middle East and the Caucasus, Central Asia and Europe.
In total, 13 countries have ratified the Agreement. Azerbaijan joined this Agreement in 2005. The purpose of the corridor is to reduce the delivery time to three weeks from India to Russia, as well as to North and Western Europe as the current route takes more than six weeks (through the Persian Gulf, the Suez Canal, the Mediterranean Sea to Helsinki).
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