First container train from China arrives at Baku int’l trade port

By: Aynur Karimova

The first container train arrived at Baku International Sea Trade Port from China via the Trans-Caspian international transport route on August 3.

It became possible as a result of the efforts by the Coordination Committee of Trans-Caspian international transport route created in October 2013.

The train consisting of 82 containers and 41 platforms departed from China’s Shihezi city on July 28. It traveled more than 4,000 kilometers, visiting Kazakh port of Aktau as well.

This project is being implemented by Kazakhstan Temyr Zholy, China Railways, Azerbaijan Railways, Azerbaijan Caspian Shipping Company and Baku International Sea Trade Port.

Addressing the event Javid Gurbanov, the head of Azerbaijan Railways CJSC, said that approximately 300,000-400,000 containers will be transported via this route by 2020, and it will bring hundreds of millions of manats of profit to Azerbaijan.

Azerbaijan’s Deputy Prime Minister Abid Sharifov, in turn, informed the attendees about the importance of projects such as the Trans-Caspian international transport route, for the region.

“Today’s event is distinguished by its importance and is the result of negotiations and works carried out over the past year and a half,” Deputy Transport Minister of Azerbaijan, Arif Askerov said in his remarks.

According to him, Azerbaijan pays significant attention to the regional cooperation.

The working group of the Coordination Committee of the Trans-Caspian international transport route held its first meeting in Baku in January 2015, and the parties reached an agreement on the adoption of measures for organizing container service on the China-Kazakhstan-Azerbaijan-Georgia-Turkey route with the use of new railway lines Zhezkazgan-Beineu, the capacity of Kazakhstan’s Aktau sea port, as well as the Kars-Akhalkalaki railway line which is under construction through the creation of favorable tariff conditions.

The project envisages the involvement of transit and foreign trade cargos, as well as application of competitive single railway tariffs in order to increase the cargo transportation.

The launch of this route will give significant impetus to the improvement of the transit and export prospects of the member countries and the increase of the international competitiveness of the Trans-Caspian international transport route.

The Trans-Caspian international transport enjoys an opportunity to become attractive and profitable for the consignor from the European countries.