Azerbaijan, Georgia, and Turkey have inaugurated the Baku-Tbilisi-Kars (BTK) rail project linking Europe and Asia at the new Port of Baku in Alat, Azerbaijan.

The 846km-long rail line has been designed to strategically link the three countries and is slated to play a major role in the Middle Corridor as part of the greater One Belt, One Road (OBOR) initiative.

The majority of the BTK railway has been upgraded as part of the development, while an additional 109km-long segment running from Georgia (30km) into Turkey (79km) has also been constructed.

BTK is expected to create new opportunities for the transhipment of cargo from China and the Far East to the Mediterranean region and Europe via a shorter and faster land route, which will take an estimated 14 to 18 days to travel in its entirety.

“The current development forms part of Aliyev’s wider strategy to diversify Azerbaijan’s oil-rich economy and transform it into a Eurasian trade and logistics hub.”

Azerbaijan President Ilham Aliyev said: “The BTK is the shortest and most reliable route connecting Europe with Asia.

“It’s planned to carry five million tonnes of cargo in the first stage and 17 million tonnes in the next stage.”

How well do you really know your competitors?

Access the most comprehensive Company Profiles on the market, powered by GlobalData. Save hours of research. Gain competitive edge.

Company Profile – free sample

Thank you!

Your download email will arrive shortly

Not ready to buy yet? Download a free sample

We are confident about the unique quality of our Company Profiles. However, we want you to make the most beneficial decision for your business, so we offer a free sample that you can download by submitting the below form

By GlobalData

The inauguration saw a freight train arrive at the new Port of Baku in Alat after travelling 2,846km from north-western Kazakhstan and crossing the Caspian Sea on a rail ferry.

The current development forms part of Aliyev’s wider strategy to diversify Azerbaijan’s oil-rich economy and transform it into a Eurasian trade and logistics hub.

In addition, the strategy is set to involve the completion of the first phase of the new Port of Baku in future, as well as the launch of the Alat Free Trade Zone next year.