The transport in Azerbaijan involves air traffic, waterways and railroads.
There are 2,932 km (1,822 mi) kilometers of rail tracks out of which only 2,117 km (1,315 mi) kilometers are in common carrier service and 810 km km are industrial lines
The railways has 176 stations, 2 of which, Bilajari and Shirvan are completely automated, 12 stations have container courts with adapted mechanisms and machines, 3 stations – Keshla, Ganja and Khirdalan are able to supply high cargo containers.
City with metro system: Baku Metro in Baku
The international border crossing between Azerbaijan and Georgia at Balakan
There are about 25,000 kilometers of roads in Azerbaijan, serving domestic cargo traffic and giving access to international main highways. Highways are mostly in fair condition and need an upgrade to international standards in a view to accommodate growing transit traffic. Main and rural roads are in poor condition and in urgent need of rehabilitation and maintenance. The total vehicle fleet in Azerbaijan was about 517,000 in 2004, with about 49 private passenger cars per 1,000 inhabitants, which is quite low compared to European benchmarks but rapidly increasing due to the fast economic growth. Road transport accounted for 54% of all freight in 2003, up from about 48% in 1999.
Main highways carrying international traffic are the Baku-Alat-Ganja-Qazakh-Georgian Border corridor (Azerbaijani section of TRACECA corridor) with a length of 503 km and the so-called North-South Corridor that stretches out from the Russian to the Iranian border along 521 km. Road connections are disrupted with Armenia because of the unresolved conflict regarding the possession of the Nagorno-Karabakh. Travel between mainland and the detached exclave of Nakhichevan is made by air or by road through Iran. Nakhichevan has a 9-kilometre strategic border with Turkey.
Ports and harbors
Sea and water cargo transportation have vital importance for Azerbaijan, especially in regions where road and rail connections are disputed. Azerbaijan has direct maritime connections only with other Caspian littoral states (Iran, Kazakhstan, Russia, and Turkmenistan). However, the Volga-Don canal provides a maritime access to the high seas. The main activity is transport of cargo, mainly of oil and oil products. Shipping regions are Caspian, Black, Mediterranean and Marmara Seas. The main shipping company owes 72 ships, 37 of which are tankers (including 1 water-carrier).
Baku International Marine Trade Port is the largest port on the Caspian Sea. Its ferry terminal underwent a major reconstruction supported by a US$16.2 million loan from EBRD. It is now able to handle 30 million tons of freight a year. The Caspian Sea provides vital transport links with other countries and is being used to ship oil until various pipeline projects are completed.
There are regular flights between Azerbaijan and former Soviet countries, UK, Germany, France, Austria, Italy, Israel, Iran, Turkey, UAE, China, Georgia and has a cargo flights in UAE, Turkey, Luxembourg, Germany, China, Kyrgystan Afghanistan and Iraq. The national airline is Azerbaijan Airlines (AZAL). There are 5 international airports located in Baku, Ganja, Nakhchivan, Lenkaran, Zaqatala. Heydar Aliyev International Airport in Baku reopened in 1999 after a US$64 million upgrading and extension financed by Turkish company Enka. The airport can now handle 1,600 passengers an hour. The new runways are also able to serve jumbojets. The complete overhaul of International Airport in Nakhchivan has been completed in May 2004. The US$32 million reconstruction project of Ganja Airport has been launched by the Government and was completed by mid 2006. In 2008, two more airports were opened in Azerbaijan. The Lankaran International Airport is located in southern part of Azerbaijan, Zaqatala Airport is in the north-west of Azerbaijan territory.
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