Georgia, Tbilisi, 28 Feb. / Trend N.Kirtskhalia /
Minister of Economy and Sustainable Development of Georgia Giorgi Kvirikashvili will pay a working visit to Turkey on Thursday.
According to the press service of the ministry, Kvirikashvili will take part in the fifth meeting of the Tripartite Council for the Baku-Tbilisi-Kars Railway Project, which will be held in Istanbul on March 1.
The visit also includes meetings of Kvirikashvili with Turkish Transport Minister Binali Yildirim and Azerbaijani Transport Minister Ziya Mammadov.
The Baku-Tbilisi-Kars railway is being built on the basis of the Georgian-Azerbaijani-Turkish inter-state agreement. Azerbaijan provided a loan worth $775 million for construction of the Georgian section.
Funding for this project from the State Oil Fund of Azerbaijan is carried out according to a presidential decree on the 'Implementation of measures within Baku-Tbilisi-Kars project' dated February 21, 2007.
$431.3 million has been allocated since the beginning of the funding of the project and up until January 1, 2013.
Plans exist to construct a new 105 kilometre branch railroad within the Baku-Tbilisi-Kars project. In addition, the Akhalkalaki-Tbilisi-Marabda railway will be reconstructed in Georgia which will increase its capacity to 15 million tons of cargo per year. It is planned to build a centre in Akhalkalaki for the transition of trains from the existing train tracks in Georgia to the European system.
Peak capacity of the corridor will be 17 million tons of cargo. This figure will initially be at the level of one million passengers and 6.5 million tons of cargo.
In future, with completion of the Marmaray project (construction of a tunnel under the Bosporus), access to Europe will be provided through the Baku-Tbilisi-Kars railway.