Baku port more than doubles container transshipment (Exclusive)

Baku, Azerbaijan, June 28

By Ilkin Shafiyev - Trend:

In January-May 2018, the Baku International Sea Trade Port increased the transshipment of TEU (twenty-foot equivalent unit) containers by 60 percent, Head of Strategic Planning and Development Department at the Port Ph.D Khudayar Hasanli said in an interview with Trend.

"In the first five months of 2018, the Baku port handled 8,745 containers, while in the same period in 2017 this figure amounted to 5,502 containers. In total, by the end of the year we plan to transship 20,000 containers. This is a short-term indicator and we expect much higher figures in the long term," Hasanli said.

Regarding the volume of cargo handling, the head of the department noted that in the current year this figure is expected to be at the level of 4.5-5 million tons. In 2017, cargo handling amounted to 4.4 million tons.

"We do not expect any significant advance in cargo growth this year. This is due to the fact that we have to complete the transfer of several components from the old Baku port. This work is carried out in stages, and it is planned to be completed within a few months," the head of the department said.

In general, more emphasis will be placed on the transshipment of containers in the long term, Hasanli said.

"Container transportation is not so popular in the post-Soviet states. Although all over the world containers account for about 90 percent of all traffic. They help improve the safety and reliability of shipping operations. We have to keep up with the current trends," Hasanli said.

The port in Alat, which will be the largest port in the Caspian Sea, is an important part of Azerbaijan's transport infrastructure. The first phase of construction of the port, which has already been completed, will allow transshipment of 15 million tons of cargo and 100,000 containers per year. At the end of the second stage, the capacity of the port will increase to 25 million tons of cargo and 500,000 containers per year.

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Follow the author on Twitter: @IlkinShafiyev

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