By Ayya Lmahamad
Azerbaijan’s and neighboring Georgia’s railway operators have signed a protocol on bilateral cooperation, Azerbaijani Railway’s press service reported on May 7.
Addressing the meeting with Georgian Railways chairman, head of Azerbaijan Railways Javid Gurbanov said that the transportation is one of the main areas of cooperation between the two countries.
Highlighting that Azerbaijan is actively involved in the implementation of many important international projects, Gurbanov said that the country has become an important international transport hub with its logistics and transit opportunities.
Speaking about the North-South and South-West corridors and the International Trans-Caspian transport route, Gurbanov said that the projects will increase the transit potential of participating countries.
In turn, Georgian Railways’ General Director David Peradze informed about the possibilities of further strengthening cooperation.
Speaking about the Baku-Tbilisi-Kars (BTK) railway, he noted that this project is a great contribution to stability and economic development in the region.
The parties discussed further development of BTK and the work done to attract additional cargoes to the routes passing through the territory of both countries. In addition, issues of mutual interest, cooperation within the Trans-Caspian international transport route, and other topics were discussed.
Baku-Tbilisi-Kars railway is of exceptional importance for turning Azerbaijan into a regional transport corridor. The agreement on the construction of the railway, which was put into operation in 2017, was signed during the meeting in Tbilisi by the leaders of Azerbaijan, Georgia, and Turkey in 2007.
The 828- kilometer Baku Tbilisi Kars railway stretch from the Azerbaijani coast of the Caspian Sea to the Georgian capital, and from there to Turkey, connecting the country’s extensive railway system and thus gaining access to European borders.
As of today, Baku-Tbilisi-Kars cargo turnover is 6 million tons, passenger turnover is 1 million people. In the future, it may be increased to 3 million passengers and 20 million tons of cargo.
Ayya Lmahamad is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow her on Twitter: @AyyaLmahamad
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