Cargo transportation via BTK to be brought to 3M tons - Turkish minister
ANKARA. KAZINFORM - Three cargo trips are carried out between Turkey, Azerbaijan and Kazakhstan weekly via the Baku-Tbilisi-Kars (BTK) railway, Minister of Transport and Infrastructure of Turkey Mehmet Cahit Turhan said in an exclusive interview with Trend.
He said that presently Turkey exports construction materials, detergents, food and agricultural products via the BTK to Azerbaijan, Georgia, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Russia, and imports mainly grain, iron and zinc.
The minister also noted that since the start of operation of the BTK railway, 100,000 tons of cargo have been transported in 102 container trains.
"We plan to transport 17 million tons of cargo annually via the BTK railway in the long term, and reach the volume of three million tons of cargo in the medium term," said Turhan.
The minister also noted that with the BTK railway, construction of one of the important sections of the Middle Corridor in Turkey was completed.
Turhan noted that BTK became a part of the work to revive the Silk Road, which is not only a transport and economic project, but also a political, cultural and social one.
The Silk Road is the longest transport and trade corridor in the world, he said.
"The total length of the Silk Road is 18,000 kilometers and it covers more than 60 countries," he added.
"With the start of operation of the BTK railway, Turkey was able to create a transport corridor between Europe and Asia," he noted. "At the same time, with the completion of this project, the Turkish State Railways (TCDD Tasimacilik AS), a part of our ministry, became a member of the Trans-Caspian International Transport Route Association since Feb. 15, 2018."
The official opening ceremony of the BTK railway was held in Baku Oct. 30 last year. The BTK railway was constructed on the basis a Georgian-Azerbaijani-Turkish intergovernmental agreement.