Rail link to Europe

17 March 2008

Work has begun on the Baku-Tbilisi-Kars railway, with the presidents of Georgia, Azerbaijan and Turkey taking part in a ground-breaking ceremony in the Georgian village of Marabda in late November. When complete in 2010 the 105 km railway will provide a direct link between the former USSR territory of Georgia and Europe's railway network.

The US$ 600 million scheme comprises 29 km of line in Georgia and 76 km in Turkey. Azerbaijan's involvement is by way of a low interest 25-year loan of US$ 200 million for the Georgian portion of the link.

Although heralded as a major advance by all three countries' presidents, it is not without controversy. The scheme has been opposed by neighbouring Armenia, because of fears it will further isolate the land-locked country.


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Andy Brown Editor, Editorial, UK - Wadhurst Tel: +44 (0) 1892 786224 E-mail: [email protected]
Neil Gerrard Senior Editor, Editorial, UK - Wadhurst Tel: +44 (0) 7355 092 771 E-mail: [email protected]
Catrin Jones Deputy Editor, Editorial, UK – Wadhurst Tel: +44 (0) 791 2298 133 E-mail: [email protected]
Eleanor Shefford Brand Manager Tel: +44 (0) 1892 786 236 E-mail: [email protected]