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caspian policy center (cpc) hosted a special ambassadorial luncheon on the baku- tbilisi- kars (btk) railway and its regional opportunities for the u.s.

Caspian Policy Center (CPC) Hosted A Special Ambassadorial Luncheon On The Baku- Tbilisi- Kars (BTK) Railway And Its Regional Opportunities for the U.S.

Author:Caspian Policy Center

Nov 14, 2017

On Tuesday, November 14, from 12:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m. Caspian Policy Center hosted a special luncheon moderated by Ambassador Richard E. Hoagland with the Ambassadors of Azerbaijan, Georgia, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan and the US government representatives, including Peter Haas, Acting Deputy Assistant Secretary for Trade Policy and Negotiations, the U.S. Department of State and Gary Litman, Vice President, U.S. Chamber of Commerce. The speakers and participants discussed the trade, transit and economic implications of the Baku-Tbilisi-Kars (BTK) railway for the neighbor countries, the Caspian region and the U.S.

The BTK railway project, initially proposed more than two decades ago, is finally coming to an end and the railway is going to be in operation before the end of this year. On October 30, 2017, an official opening ceremony of the BTK railway took place in Baku with the participation of heads of states and governments of Azerbaijan, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Turkey and Uzbekistan. The initial capacity of the railway will be 6.5 million tons of cargo and one million passengers per year. Under its full capacity, the railway's total volume is projected up to 17 million tons of cargo annually. The BTK railway is a part of the Trans-Caspian International Transport Route (TCITR) designed to be a corridor from China to Europe.

The US government representatives, Matt Ewards, Director of the Office of Russia, Ukraine and Eurasia, the U.S. Department of Commerce, Peter Haas, Acting Deputy Assistant Secretary for Trade Policy and Negotiations, the U.S. Department of State and Ambassador Richard Norland from the Office of the Chairman of the Joint Chief of Staff also delivered their remarks on the importance of the Baku - Tbilisi- Kars for the regional transport network.

The discussion ended with the closing remarks by Ambassador Richard E. Hoagland, CPC Board member and a family photo of the speakers and participants.

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