The heads of the customs services of Azerbaijan, Russia, Iran and India will discuss the coordination of customs conditions as part of the North-South corridor project in the near future, Indian Ambassador to Russia Pound Srinivasan Raghavan said in an interview with RIA Novosti Aug. 18.
He said that India must look for shorter routes for supplying its products, especially agricultural products.
"Here we can mention about the importance of the North-South project,” the ambassador said. “We are actively working on the launch of this project because this will reduce the costs twofold. At present, many details must be coordinated. But we are proceeding very quickly."
He said that the head of the Russian Federal Customs Service Andrey Beliyaninov plans to meet with colleagues from India, Iran and Azerbaijan in the near future to discuss the coordination of the customs conditions as part of this project.
"A meeting will be held in New Delhi from August 19-21,” Raghavan said. “Eight countries, participating in the project, rather than four countries, will take part in the project implementation. These consultations will have to speed up the work. We want it to be launched in early 2016."
The purpose of creating the North-South international transport corridor is to integrate the highways of Azerbaijan, Russia and Iran.
The 375-kilometers long Qazvin-Rasht-Astara railway is currently the missing link in the North-South transport corridor and it will connect the Northern Europe to South-East Asia. It will link the railroads of Iran, Azerbaijan and Russia.
The investments made in the construction of the Qazvin-Rasht-Astara (Iran) - Astara (Azerbaijan) corridor section are estimated at $ 400 million.
The construction of the Qazvin-Rasht railway with the length of 205 kilometers has already been completed. Its capacity will be equal to 1.4 million passengers and 5-7 million metric tons of cargo per year, according to the preliminary estimates. As many as 22 tunnels, 15 bridges will be built on the railway. The construction of 15 tunnels has already been completed.
At the initial stage, it is planned to transport 6 million metric tons of cargo via the North-South corridor per year and further to increase this figure to 15-20 million metric tons.
Follow us on Twitter @AzerNewsAz