Azerbaijan’s transit potential vital for development
Details added (first version posted at 12:41)
Baku, Azerbaijan, Sept. 7
By Azad Hasanli – Trend:
It is important to use Azerbaijan’s transit potential for ensuring a sustainable development of the country, Shahin Mustafayev, Azerbaijani economy minister, said.
Mustafayev made the remarks at a ceremony in Baku Sept. 7 dedicated to the signing of an agreement on rendering consulting services for establishment of a free trade zone in Alat settlement in Azerbaijan.
The minister said Azerbaijan is thoroughly working in that direction and is implementing significant projects.
“Azerbaijan stands in the center of energy routes,” the minister said. “The Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan (BTC) oil pipeline and the Baku-Tbilisi-Erzurum (BTE) gas pipeline, originating from Azerbaijan, and construction of Trans-Anatolian Pipeline and Trans-Adriatic Pipeline increase the country’s significance. Moreover, the country’s potential as an international logistics center and a transport corridor also increases,” Mustafayev said.
Speaking about transport projects, Mustafayev added that practical implementation of the North-South project has already been launched.
The minister said the first stage of the work to build the Baku International Sea Trade Port has already started.
“Among the operations in the east-west direction, I would like to stress the development of shipping, railways, forthcoming completion of construction of the Baku-Tbilisi-Kars (BTK) railway,” he added.
“At the same time, significant actions are taken to construct the North-South transport corridor,” he said. “Corresponding talks are being held with neighboring countries.”
“A railway is being constructed as part of the North-South project,” the minister said. “The railway will run up to the border with Iran by late 2016. A railway bridge over the Astarachay River will also be built.”
Mustafayev added that in the future a railway will be built up to the Persian Gulf, which is a significant action to increase the transit potential of Azerbaijan as part of the North-South transport corridor.
“At the same time, Azerbaijan is connected to the Black Sea through a railway,” he added. “Thus, Azerbaijan has a very favorable position, being in the center of the north-south and the east-west routes.”