Country prepares draft law aimed to abolish road tax for cargo transiting [PHOTO]
A draft law aimed at abolishing the road tax for cargo transit has been prepared by Azerbaijan, Azernews reports per Chairman of the State Road Transport Service under the Azerbaijani Ministry of Digital Development and Transport Anar Rzayev.
The remarks were made at a conference on “Development prospects of international road shipments in Azerbaijan” on May 19 in Baku.
The chairman noted that the bill was developed in order to abolish the standard of cargo carriers paying road taxes in accordance with the country's Tax Code, which has no relation to road charges. He added that the road tax payment upon entry to the country applies to both local and foreign carriers.
The chairman added that some other issues are also included in the bill.
"Following the bill, some types of taxes are scheduled to be reduced, while some of them will probably be canceled," he noted.
Transit facilitation accord
Speaking at the same event, Deputy Head of the Department for Organization of Customs Control and Trade Facilitation at the Azerbaijani State Customs Committee Samad Garalov also announced that a draft agreement on transit facilitation is expected to be signed between Azerbaijan, Georgia, and Kazakhstan.
In his view, the draft was developed back in 2016 by the customs services of Azerbaijan, Georgia, and Kazakhstan with the financial support of the Asian Development Bank.
"This agreement was signed between our country and Georgia. The signing of this agreement by Kazakhstan is expected. Moreover, this system is expected to be launched by Georgia from January 1, 2023," the department head noted.
Garalov added that this draft can become competitive among similar initiatives.
Meanwhile, the head of the transport industry regulation department at the Azerbaijani Ministry of Digital Development and Transport Vasif Amiraslanov noted that the demand for cargo shipments through the South Caucasus will grow under the new realities.
He added that the ministry will continue to support TRACECA [Europe-Caucasus-Asia transport corridor project] in the process of simplifying customs procedures and tariff policy.
"Our ministry pays special attention to companies engaged in international cargo shipments. Azerbaijan aims to diversify transport corridors and support state support for transport projects, improvement of normative acts,” the head of the department noted.
Further, Amiraslanov stressed that Azerbaijan is a participant in international transport projects. Thus, to this date, work has already been completed on the construction of a railway on the border with Iran. Besides, work is underway to improve the North-South international transport corridor.
In a separate statement, Anar Rzayev stated that Azerbaijani carriers are ready to participate in combined cargo shipments.
The official noted that the sector of combined cargo shipments is rapidly developing and creating new opportunities not only for the domestic market but also for the region as a whole.
"We aim to accelerate Azerbaijan's integration into the international transport system, simplifying cargo transportation and optimizing the legal framework. Measures have been taken to create ports, roads, and railways to ensure the transit of goods to European countries. A new method of issuing permit forms for international shipments was introduced and an appropriate commission was created,” he stressed.
He also noted that work is underway in Azerbaijan for the smooth implementation of freight and passenger traffic.
"In 2015, 155,000 companies carried out cargo transportation through the territory of Azerbaijan, and now this figure exceeds 240,000. The volume of cargo transportation is also growing," Rzayev said.
Later, it was noted that a new model of roads is being formed with the creation of recreation areas and the provision of services to drivers based on international standards.
"The current realities require attracting the flow of goods to our region and carrying out active work in this direction,” he stressed.
Moreover, the official added that Azerbaijan is ready to increase the number of permit forms, as it has a sufficient base for the implementation of combined cargo shipments.