The implementation of the Trans-Afghan Corridor and the China-Kyrgyzstan-Uzbekistan route will contribute to the creation of a single transport network between Uzbekistan and Azerbaijan
Tashkent, Uzbekistan (UzDaily.com) -- As part of the visit of the First Deputy Director of the Institute for Strategic and Interregional Studies (ISMI) Akramjon Nematov to Azerbaijan on 5 July, a meeting was held with the head of the marketing and sales department of the Baku International Sea Trade Port in Alyat Anar Ibragimov and other officials.
The ISMI representative also got acquainted with the activities of the port. It was noted that the Baku International Sea Trade Port is a large intermodal distribution hub and is used as an integrated development model. A customs zone functions in it, the infrastructure of the Alyat village is involved, and various transport and non-transport projects are being implemented.
It was emphasized that this is where the main railway and road networks of Azerbaijan converge, thereby contributing to the realization of the vision of the port as a major hub, becoming the key to regional and global supply chains.
According to the port staff, “in the medium term, an ambitious goal has been set to increase the volume of cargo transported through the Baku port to 2.4 million twenty-foot equivalent containers (TEU). There are opportunities for this - all the necessary infrastructure has been created that allows unloading and reloading almost all types of cargo.
Within the framework of the meeting, the Deputy Director of the ISMI briefed the Azerbaijani colleagues on the efforts of Uzbekistan to develop the transport and logistics sector. “Uzbekistan gives priority to the development of international transport corridors, digitalization of logistics chains, including the processes of passing goods and vehicles through border points, optimization of transport and other costs in the cost of export products, and increasing the speed of delivery of goods,” he stressed.
It was noted that today 6.4% of Uzbekistan’s GDP falls on the transport services sector. Transport accounts for 7.4% of total investment and 29.5% of the service sector. By 2030 it is planned to increase the capacity of the transit potential by 4.4 times - up to 6.04 billion tons. At the same time, the share of investments in the transport sector relative to the country’s GDP should increase to US$46.7 billion.
In this regard, Akramjon Nematov is convinced, it is necessary to establish effective cooperation in the transport and communications sector. According to him, today Uzbekistan and Azerbaijan, within the framework of the Trans-Caspian railway corridor, act as connecting links between the countries of Central Asia and the Caucasus, as well as other states of the European and Asian continent. Under these conditions, the desire of countries to develop trans-regional transport corridors is of particular importance, which will increase the volume of mutual cargo transportation and increase the transit potential not only of the two countries, but also of the two regions as a whole.
As Akramjon Nematov noted, the use of the transit potential of the Baku-Tbilisi-Kars railway, which ensures the entry of Uzbek goods to the world market, is of great importance for Uzbekistan. For its part, Azerbaijan is showing interest in extending the planned China-Kyrgyzstan-Uzbekistan railway to the Caspian Sea, which will enhance the transit capabilities of the Trans-Caspian corridor.
"The parties also express mutual interest in promoting the multimodal transport corridor Asia-Pacific - China - Kyrgyzstan - Uzbekistan - Turkmenistan - Azerbaijan - Georgia - Turkey - Europe, which will significantly increase the trade potential of the fraternal countries," the expert stated.
According to him, great prospects open up with the creation of the Trans-Afghan corridor, the implementation of the China-Kyrgyzstan-Uzbekistan route and the restoration of the Zangezur corridor, which can provide the shortest land route from Asia to Europe. These routes will create a single transport network between the countries, expand opportunities for trade with both China and the European Union.
In particular, the expert stated, the successful implementation of the China-Kyrgyzstan-Uzbekistan corridor will reduce the distance from China to South-Eastern Europe to 900 km, which is equal to 7-8 days. This will help turn the countries of Central Asia into a land bridge connecting Azerbaijan with China and the South Asian region as a whole. “Thanks to this railway, it will be possible to ensure a deeper integration of all the countries of Central Asia and the Caucasus into global supply chains and active participation in the international transit of goods,” Akramjon Nematov summed up.
At the same time, the deputy head of the ISMI said, “acting as hubs in their regions, Uzbekistan and Azerbaijan should not be limited only to the function of transit points, but form economic corridors by creating production, logistics and marketing centers along existing transport routes. This will allow us to produce and supply high value-added products to foreign markets.”
The first deputy director of ISMI Akramjon Nematov is in Azerbaijan as part of his participation in the meeting held on July 3 this year. Shusha Forum of Think Tanks of the Member States of the Organization of Turkic States.