TODAY.AZ / Politics

Azerbaijan becomes most important link in BSEC

14 December 2018 [15:54] - TODAY.AZ

By Azernews


By Abdul Kerimkhanov

Azerbaijan successfully fulfills all the tasks to increase the country's transit capabilities, implements large-scale projects and makes major investments in improving transit potential.

A regular meeting of the Council of Ministers of Foreign Affairs of the Organization of the Black Sea Economic Cooperation (BSEC) is being held on December 14 in Baku. Azerbaijan assumed the presidency of the BSEC in June of this year and named priorities during the presidency of the organization: the development of transport infrastructure in the region. Azerbaijan will also pay special attention to the development of tourism, agriculture, communications and other areas.

Today, the BSEC is probably the only full-format international organization in the Black Sea-Caspian region, which unites states with different economic potential and different foreign policy orientations.

In recent years, the BSEC has become a real platform for developing consolidated positions of the participating states. The BSEC gives new impulses to the development of bilateral and combined cooperation between the countries of the region.

And the fact that the development of transport infrastructure in the region has become a priority during the period of Azerbaijan’s chairmanship in the organization for a country has a real basis.

A strategic trade and economic corridor historically passed through the territory of Azerbaijan, which connected Europe and Asia. The modern world dictates the countries to qualitatively change the existing links, but the regional transport corridors still retain their significance in the global communication system.

The role of Azerbaijan in the development of transport infrastructure in the region is growing and acquires special importance. Because of the favorable geographical position, large-scale projects being carried out, more efficient use of the potential of transit and freight provide good opportunities for a steady increase in income for all BSEC members.

For Azerbaijan, the investment in transport projects aimed at developing infrastructure, increasing the availability and quality of services of the country's transport complex is of particular importance.

In recent years, Azerbaijan is very seriously engaged in the development of transport infrastructure in the country and the country invested large funds in this sphere. Seven airports have been built, of which six received international status. The largest commercial port in the Caspian Sea is being built in Alat, which already operated. The railway infrastructure is being updated. Azerbaijan has the largest fleet in the Caspian Sea.

Azerbaijan does not forget about the importance of cooperation with its neighbors, creating, along with transport infrastructure for domestic needs, a regional infrastructure.

The opening of the Baku-Tbilisi-Kars railway in October 2017 was another historic achievement of Azerbaijan. At the same time, intensive work is underway on the North-South transport corridor. Azerbaijan - a country that has no access to the open seas, has become one of the transport centers of Eurasia.

Today, Azerbaijan is the initiator and active participant in a number of large regional transport projects. Thanks to the development of the transport industry, our country is becoming the key transit, logistics center and an important transport hub in the region.

International experts recognize that the same North-South transport corridor will allow increasing the transit potential of Azerbaijan. This project has not of a regional, but international scale.

The project originates in India and, passing through Iran, covers the territory of Azerbaijan and extends to Russia and the Gulf of Finland. The implementation of the aforementioned project will allow a two-three-fold reduction in the period of cargo delivery to the consumer. So, the North-South corridor not only connects Iran and Russia but also India with Europe.

The Baku-Tbilisi-Kars railway is of exceptional importance for turning Azerbaijan into a regional transport corridor. Launched last year, the highway connects various continents. Baku-Tbilisi-Kars is the shortest and most reliable highway between Asia and Europe.

Against the background of the commissioning of the above-mentioned railway, the opening of the RO-RO terminal at the Baku International Trade Sea Port is crucial.

The international sea port in Alat occupies an important place in the transport system of Azerbaijan. After commissioning of the complex, this logistics center will become the point of intersection of road, rail and sea routes in the region. The Alat port will give new content and dynamism to the transportation of goods from China to Europe and Central Asia. In addition, the creation of a free economic zone around the port will give new impetus to the increase in freight traffic.

The construction of international airports in Baku and the regions, highways of international importance in the direction of East-West and North-South transport corridors and the renewal of railway lines play an important role in expanding the country's foreign economic relations.

Expanding the logistics capabilities of Azerbaijan serves not only development but also contributes to enhancing the country's authority in regional and world trade.

The opening on August 13, 2018 in the Lokbatan settlement of the Absheron Logistics Center is a brilliant confirmation of the work done to improve the operations in the logistics sector. Absheron Logistics Center provides all services and guarantees time saving and cost reduction.

This important infrastructure facility is connected to the Baku-Tbilisi-Kars, Iran-Astara-Baku, Russia-Yalama-Alat railway routes. After commissioning the Baku-Tbilisi-Kars railway at full capacity, the center will provide an opportunity to conduct import-export operations with neighboring countries, more flexibly transport multimodal cargoes through the territory of Azerbaijan.

Moreover, Azerbaijan is planning to create logistics centers outside the country. Clear evidence of this is the functioning of the Azerbaijani production and logistics center in the Kazakh city of Aktau, which is the first logistics center of Azerbaijan abroad with a 25 percent state share.

The creation of logistics centers, the restoration of the ancient Silk Road, the introduction of electronic freight, the simplification of procedural rules indicates the transformation of Azerbaijan into a strategically important transportation hub.

All this expands capabilities of Azerbaijan to participate in transit traffic. On the other hand, the republic is a reliable guarantor of the effective transportation of transit cargo through its territory.

The implementation of transport projects serves to create direct international road-ferry and rail links in the Black Sea-Caspian region, thereby increasing the role of Azerbaijan in export-import operations.

URL: http://www.today.az/news/politics/177053.html

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