The Port of Baku, Austrian ÖBB Rail Cargo Group and Cabooter Group (NL) signed an agreement to strengthen and expand the freight traffic from Europe to Central Asia and China via the Trans-Caspian International Transport Route (Middle Corridor).
The Federal Minister of Transport, Innovation and Technology of Austria, Mr. Andreas Reichhardt, and Ambassador of the Republic of Azerbaijan to Austria, Mr. Galib Israfilov were also present at the signing ceremony. The parties have decided to jointly promote the Middle Corridor in Europe and strengthen the connections between the existing European freight networks and logistics hubs in Europe with the Port of Baku. Federal Minister of Transport, Innovation and Technology of Austria, Mr. Andreas Reichhardt said that “today’s signed MoU marks a new strategic initiative of the Rail Cargo Group, expanding its presence towards Central Asia and China. The Port of Baku is going to play a key role in the development of the initiative. We expect that over a short period, the mentioned route will be very efficient in terms of timing and volumes of cargo transshipment”.
Director-General of the Port of Baku, Dr. Taleh Ziyadov noted that „the agreement with new partner, the Austrian ÖBB Rail Cargo Group, is an important milestone in expanding the West-to-East transport corridor from Europe’s busiest logistics hubs in the Netherlands such as Venlo and Germany to Turkey (Istanbul), Azerbaijan (Baku), Central Asia and further to China“. Located at the heart of the Eurasian continent, Port of Baku serves as a natural bridge between the European Union, Central Asia and China. In the last 10 years, the exports from the EU countries to China have increased threefold making China the second biggest trade partner of the EU.
This opens enormous opportunities for the Port of Baku and the Middle Corridor altogether, as well as for the leading European transport and logistics companies like ÖBB RCG and the Cabooter Group. With 8,500 employees, branches throughout Europe and annual sales of around EUR 2.3 billion, the ÖBB Rail Cargo Group is one of the leading rail logistics companies in Europe. Together with strong partners, the ÖBB Rail Cargo Group operates a nationwide network of end-to-end logistics in Europe and beyond to Asia. The company brings 474 million passengers and 113 million tons of goods to their destinations in an environmentally friendly manner every year. At the end of the day, the meeting with the leading logistics companies of Austria, which aim to expand towards Caucasus, Central Asia and China was held at the embassy of Azerbaijan in Vienna. A matter of further development of logistics and distribution hubs along the Middle Corridor, including the Port of Baku, were discussed more thoroughly during the last meeting.