Baku-Tbilisi-Kars railway construction progresses on schedule
Azerbaijan, Baku, Nov 18 / corr Trend E.Ismayilov /
The construction of the Baku-Tbilisi-Kars railway is implemented in accordance with schedule, Azerbaijan Railways Spokesman Nadir Azmammadov told Trend.
Construction work is being performed throughout Georgia, he added.
Azmammadov noted that work in some sections in Georgia will be suspended due to bad weather conditions. "Suspension of work during the winter period is a normal process," he added.
Azerbaijani Transport Minister Ziya Mamedov said earlier that project participants will launch two pilot trains by the end of 2012. The route will be put into commission in full mode in the first half of 2013.
The Baku-Tbilisi-Kars railway is constructed in accordance with the Georgian-Azerbaijani-Turkish intergovernmental agreement.
Azerbaijan has allocated for the construction of the Georgian section of a loan of $775 million. The project is financed by the State Oil Fund in accordance with the presidential decree "On the implementation of the activities of the Baku-Tbilisi-Kars project", dated February 21, 2007.
In the framework of Baku-Tbilisi-Kars railway project it is planned to construct a new 105-kilometer branch railroad, 76 kilometers of which will stretch through Turkey and 29 km through Georgia. In addition, the Georgian section of the Akhalkalaki-Tbilisi-Marabda section in Georgia will be reconstructed, increasing its capacity to 15 million tons of cargo per year. It is planned to build in Akhalkalaki a place for transition of trains from track existing in Georgia to the European one.
Peak capacity of the corridor will be 17 million tons of cargo. At the initial stage, this figure will be at the level of one million passengers and 6.5 million tons of cargo.