Azerbaijan Submits List of Vessels to Pass Volga-Don Canal to Russian Federation
Azerbaijan, Baku / Trend corr S. Aliyev / Mukhtar Akhundov, the deputy head of the Foreign Economic Relations and Marketing of the Azerbaijani State Caspian Shipping, reported on 23 April that Azerbaijan had submitted to Russia a list including 20 vessels to pass the Volga-Don canal in navigation period of 2007. The authorization is expected to be received in near future. Navigation began on 31 March.
The situation with the authorization to run Russia's internal water territory for Azerbaijan remains stable. Thus, a ship may enter the Caspian Sea and return to its permanent operation place in the Black Sea only once. In order to resolve the problem, Russian legal regulations have to be changed.
The Azerbaijani State Caspian Shipping received 25 authorizations for 14 ships to run the internal waters of Russia, with 11 of them being provided for passage into the Caspian Sea and 14 for exit.
However, despite the permissions obtained, the Azerbaijani party hopes that a long-term agreement on passing via the Russian domestic waters might be concluded soon. However, it will require Russia's moving amendments not only to its Marine Code, but also the whole existing legislation.
One way passage of Azerbaijani vessels via Russia's domestic waters costs $20.000 - 25.000 to Azerbaijan. Russian ships pay just $5.000- 6.000 for the same. Thus, the passage of Azerbaijani vessels gives a significant benefit to Russian channel services.