Allocating additional investments for Baku-Tbilisi-Kars railway is under consideration
Azerbaijan, Baku, April 12 / N. Ismayilova, E. Ismayilov /
Allocation of additional funding by Azerbaijan will possibly be increased for renovation and construction work costs on the Georgian section for the creation of Baku-Tbilisi-Kars railway network. The new railway will combine the railway systems of Azerbaijan, Turkey and Georgia, Azerbaijan Deputy Transport Minister Musa Panahov said on Tuesday.
He said at present the issue of additional funding is being discussed. The main task is to agree on a new loan tranche for the Georgian side.
In this case the question is about allocating additional funds amounting to about $ 500 million.
Panahov also stressed that at present construction and repair works are suspended because of snow in some sections, but the construction is expected to resume in all sections, without exception.
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.
Interest rate on the second loan is expected to be increased to five percent.
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, 29 kilometers through Georgia. Moreover, an Akhalkalaki-Tbilisi-Marabda railway section will be reconstructed in Georgia to increase transport capacity up 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 will be completed in the first half of 2012, Transport Minister Ziya Mammadov told Trend earlier. 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.