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Transit and transport cooperation between TRACECA countries and the European Union plays an important role for the future development of the entire region


This was announced on June 15, 2022 by the Secretary General of the PS IGC TRACECA, Mr. Asset Assavbayev, at a Round table on "Transit and Transport Cooperation between Kazakhstan and the European Union: Prospects for the Development of the Middle Corridor".

This event is organized by the Mission of the Republic of Kazakhstan in the European Union together with the Honorary Member of the European Parliament, Mr. Boguslaw Liberadzki, the National Company "Kazakhstan Temir Zholy", the International Association "TITR" (Middle Corridor) and is timed to its fifth anniversary.

The main purpose of the Round Table is to discuss the common interests of stakeholders in the field of connectivity between Kazakhstan and the EU, the current state and future of the multimodal transit route passing through TRACECA.

Among the invited and participants of the Round Table - representatives of the European Parliament, Mr. Boguslaw Liberadzki, Mr. Luc DEVIGNE, Deputy Managing Director, European External Action Service, Mr. Pablo FABREGAS MARTINEZ, Member of the Cabinet of the EU Commissioner for Transport, Mr. Terhi Hakala, Special Representative for Central Asia, Ms. Anna Natova, Director General of the Bulgarian Ports Infrastructure Company, Mr. Asset Assavbayev, Secretary General of the PS IGC TRACECA, Mr. Gaidar Abdikerimov, Secretary General of TITR , as well as senior officials and representatives of the National Company "Kazakhstan Railways", Kazmortransflot, ports of Aktau, Kuryk, Antwerp, Constanta, Batumi, transport and logistics companies KTZ Express, Nurminen Logistics, Grampet Group Romania, FERRMED, DB Cargo Eurasia GmbH, EBRD, OSCE, etc.

The Round Table brought together issues related to the discussions of participants and speakers during the sessions of global supply chains and routes, practical connectivity, multimodal transport, trade along the Middle Corridor, international logistics and world market, the dynamic development of transport links between Asia and Europe.

Taking into consideration the experience of long-term cooperation with the EU, during his speech, the Secretary General highlighted the significant contribution of the European Union to the formation and development of the corridor. In particular, within the framework of technical assistance projects, with the implementation and support of the EC, the countries of the TRACECA region have implemented a number of infrastructure projects, significantly improving the conditions for international transport.

Secretary General Mr. Assavbayev familiarized the participants with the status of the implementation of TRACECA initiatives in the countries in detail, touched upon such promising areas of the corridor development as containerization, digitalization, tariffication, liberalization, etc. He shared information on the review prepared by the PS on measures taken to stimulate multimodal transport in the EU and China, and in this regard, pointed out the importance of sharing experience with EU countries.  

The importance of the joint efforts of TRACECA and the EU and the exchange of experience in the main areas on which the efforts of the Permanent Secretariat are focused in the short term were emphasized. Namely, issues of transport documents digitalization, harmonization, containerization.

"For TRACECA, first of all, it is important to ensure the coordination of policies implemented by both the EU and the countries in order to move harmoniously in one direction. The organization of harmonious transportation along the TRACECA corridor requires more assistance and efforts not only from one country - Kazakhstan, but also from all countries through whose territories the cargo transportation route passes," Mr. A.A. Assavbayev stressed.

TRACECA countries are also working on the transition to the use of the CIM/SMGS electronic consignment note throughout the corridor. "Given the use of digital platforms for the use of the CIM consignment note in the EU, I would like to focus on the need to integrate information systems or the possibility of using digital solutions used in the EU," Mr. A.A. Assavbayev added.

Another promising project presented to the participants of the Round Table is a Global Transit Document created on the basis of IBM blockchain technology. This digital product will allow cargo to be transported in containers by all modes of transport (except aviation) from the point of departure to the destination without mandatory customs inspection.

Interaction with the EU is also necessary to identify areas of cooperation, as the European Union implements its own initiatives along the corridor, including through the Eastern Partnership countries and the Strategy for Central Asia. The transport infrastructure of the TRACECA countries creates all conditions for increasing the capacity of container transport and ensuring integration with TEN-T, which in its turn will make a significant contribution to reducing the cost of both transportation and final goods.

On the outcomes of the meeting, the participants of the Round Table confirmed their readiness to continue the dialogue, taking into account the support of the EU, and expressed the hope that the corridor will continue to develop, meeting the demand of international trade of both TRACECA countries and countries of Europe and Asia as a whole.


Permanent Secretaritat of the IGC TRACECA