TODAY.AZ / Politics

Azerbaijani president receives head of Supreme Majlis of Nakhchivan Autonomous Republic

19 November 2019 [10:00] - TODAY.AZ

President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev has received Chairman of Azerbaijan Railways Closed Joint Stock Company Javid Gurbanov.

Touching upon the work carried out in relation to railways in Azerbaijan in recent years and future objectives, President Ilham Aliyev said:

- Major investments have been made in the railway infrastructure in recent years. Because of this investment, the infrastructure has been significantly developed. It is no coincidence that the latest report of the Davos World Economic Forum ranks Azerbaijan in 34th place in the world for the level and quality of railways. This is a fairly high indicator, a reflection of the work done in recent years. I should also add that in terms of the level of transport infrastructure, we are in 31st place in the world. In other words, the entire transport infrastructure in Azerbaijan is being upgraded and modernized. A new trading port was commissioned last year, the historic railway Baku-Tbilisi-Kars in 2017, internal railways are being modernized. In a nutshell, our high place in the Davos ranking does reflect the reality. However, in parallel with this, we need to continue to pay more attention to this area because the successful development of our country also depends on the transport infrastructure.

Today, Azerbaijan provides services as a reliable transit country. According to the general opinion, which is reflected in the reports of international organizations, Azerbaijan has become a reliable and important transit country. I have repeatedly said that for each country to be able to develop its transport potential, first of all it has to maintain good relations with neighboring countries, and it is a reality today. Over the past few months alone, I met with the leaders of four neighboring countries – the President of Russia, the President of Turkey, the President of Iran and the Prime Minister of Georgia. During these meetings, sufficient attention was also paid to our cooperation in the transport sector. In short, in the future, our transit potential will further serve the development of the non-oil sector. The role of the transport sector in increasing the share of the non-oil sector in the gross domestic product is increasing. At present, we are making broader use of the Baku-Tbilisi-Kars railway. Last year, about 300,000 tons of cargo were transported. Most importantly, we are no longer content with the goods coming only from Asian countries. We actively cooperate with Europe. Some European countries are already using this road. We have already started receiving container trains from China. The China-Kazakhstan-Azerbaijan-Europe corridor is functioning. In addition, goods have also been transported in the direction of Afghanistan-Turkmenistan-Azerbaijan-Europe lately. We have managed to connect the Lapis Lazuli railway with Baku-Tbilisi-Kars. This ushers ample opportunities. During my meetings with the presidents of Central Asian republics, a fairly broad exchange of views was held on railway transportation. We are currently discussing the possibility of Uzbekistan and Tajikistan using our corridor. I am sure that success will be achieved in this direction as well.

In other words, I want to say that the Baku-Tbilisi-Kars railway, once launched on the initiative of Azerbaijan and implemented with our major financial support, is very important. When we were laying the foundation of the railway earlier, I said that this project would redraw the transport map of the world, that it would turn Azerbaijan, which has no access to the world ocean sea, into an international transport hub. At the same time