Baku-Tbilisi-Kars Railway Project Presented in Geneva
Azerbaijan, Baku, 19 February / corr Trend S.Agayeva / The Baku-Tbilisi-Kars railway project has been presented at an annual session of the UN European Economic Commission (EEC) ongoing in Geneva by Ziya Mammadov, the Azerbaijani Transport Minister, Elchin Amirbayov, the Azerbaijani Ambassador to Switzerland, said over the telephone from Bern.
The Baku- Tbilisi-Akhalkalaki- Kars project includes the construction of a 105km rail road with a 76 km section running via Turkey and 29 km section via Georgia. Moreover, a 183 km section of the Akhalkalaki-Marabda-Tbilisi railway will be also reconstructed to improve the carrying capacity to 15mln tons of cargo per year. There are plans to build in Akhalkalaki a place for trains to interchange from the track existing in Georgia to the European one.
The project is estimated to $422mln and taking into consideration the accompanying infrastructure its cost will comprise $600mln.
The Azerbaijani transport minister spoke about the construction of a new port in the country. The minister plans to discuss further cooperation between Azerbaijan and the EEC at the meeting with Marek Belka, the Executive Secretary of the EEC, the Ambassador said.
The EEC is one of five regional commissions of UN. It was established immediately after World War II with the effort to assist in the rehabilitation of European countries' economy destroyed by war. At the beginning of the 1990s the commission expanded considerably. Along with European countries, the United States, Canada, Israel and former Soviet countries entered the organization.
During the visit to Bern the Azerbaijani minister held a meeting with his Swiss counterpart on an exchange of opinions on expansion of cooperation.