Amount of additional funding for construction of Georgian section of Baku-Tbilisi-Kars railway again increases
Azerbaijan, Baku, Feb. 1 /Trend, E.Ismayilov/
Azerbaijan can provide additional $550 million for the construction of the Georgian section of Baku-Tbilisi-Kars railway, a source at Azerbaijan Railways JSC said on Tuesday.
Previously it was reported to provide additional funding in amount of $500 million.
"This issue is still under consideration, presumably $550 million will be allocated to finance the construction of the Georgian section," said the source.
Earlier, Azerbaijan allocated a $200-million loan from the State Oil Fund of the Azerbaijan Republic to construct the section. The loan covers 25 years, with an annual rate of one percent.
The rate is expected to be increased to five percent for the second loan.
A new 105-kilometer railroad branch will be constructed as a part of the Baku-Tbilisi-Kars Railway. About 76 kilometers will stretch via Turkey, and 29 kilometers through Georgia. Moreover, an Akhalkalaki-Tbilisi-Marabda railway section will be reconstructed in Georgia to increase transport capacity to 15 million tons of cargo a year. A point of train transition from the existing train tracks in Georgia to the European one is planned to be built in Akhalkalaki.
The construction of the Baku-Tbilisi-Kars Railway, which will connect the railway systems of Azerbaijan, Georgia and Turkey, will be completed in the first half of 2012, Azerbaijani Transport Minister Ziya Mammadov said earlier following the consultations within the project. But, despite the agreed terms of the implementation of the project, the sides are working to accelerate the process and complete most of the operations by late 2011
The corridor's peak capacity will hit 17 million tons. Initially, its capacity will reach 1 million passengers and 6.5 million tons of cargo.