Trend news agency expert Seymur Aliyev
The sixth airport has been recently opened in Azerbaijan. Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev attended the opening ceremony in Yevlakh.
The Nakhchivan International Airport, which meets the modern standards was commissioned in 2004. The airports in Ganja, Zagatala, Lankaran and Gabala were commissioned one after another from 2006-2011. A new air-terminal complex will be commissioned at the Heydar Aliyev International Airport in the near future.
Azerbaijan's transport sector is one of the fastest growing sectors of the country's economy. The accelerated passenger and cargo transportation is one of the more important principles of the development of the economy as a whole. Moreover, along with high technology and the development of human resources, this sphere is one of the most important within the country's economic diversification and development of non-oil economy.
Opening airports in the regions of the country also contribute to the development of Azerbaijan's tourism potential.
President Aliyev said during the opening of the airport that the reopening of Yevlakh Airport is a very significant event that demonstrates the development and strength of the country.
"This also demonstrates that all important infrastructure facilities have been reconstructed, restored and modernized," the president added. "The new airport will play a very important role in restructuring of Azerbaijan's transport infrastructure."
The Yevlakh Airport, designed in the Soviet era for small planes, will be able to receive any aircraft after reconstruction.
Thanks to its geopolitical position on the crossroads of Asia and Europe and North and South, Azerbaijan has always been a crucial transport center. Today, thanks to the current transport policy, investments and the creation and modernization of new infrastructure, the republic has turned itself into not only a transport center, but also an initiator of the largest regional projects. At the time, Baku was one of the initiators of creating transport corridor TRACECA, general secretariat of which is in Azerbaijan.
At the initiative of Azerbaijan, and through financing from the republic, the ambitious Baku-Tbilisi-Kars railway project is under construction. The commissioning of this route will facilitate significant growth of cargo flows from Asia to Europe and link the Caucasus with European Union countries by using Turkish Marmaray tunnel.
Jointly with Russia and Iran, Azerbaijan prepares implementation of "North-South" railway transport corridor project which will give opportunity to deliver cargoes from Europe to Persian Gulf countrues and India.
Construction of the largest commercial sea port in the Caspian Sea is underway in the republic. Creation of port infrastructure will significantly increase the effectiveness of cargo transportation through Caspian Sea and will be the part of Baku-Tbilisi-Kars project. In addition, a shipbuilding plant will be built in Azerbaijan which will give opportunity to meet demand for ships in the future not only in Azerbaijan, but also in the entire Caspian region. Currently, Azerbaijan has the largest commercial fleet in the Caspian Sea.
Great work has been carried out in reconstruction of republican and local highways.
Azerbaijan perceives the significance of developing its transport sector for economic gain all around the republic. The main indicator of this is the volume of domestic investment which significantly exceeds foreign borrowings in recent years. After the completion of construction of Baku-Tbilisi-Kars railway, a new port and shipbuilding plant, as well as a number of other large infrastructure projects in coming years, we can expect the next qualitative leap in Azerbaijan's economy.