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ACIG takes part in the 3rd International Railway Business Forum “Strategic Partnership 1520: Central Asia”

On November 12 – 14, 2012, the 3rd International Railway Business Forum “Strategic Partnership 1520: Central Asia” took place in Astana. The event was aimed at developing talking points of the forum “Strategic Partnership 1520” which took place in Sochi in 2011. The Forum covered the issues of Central Asian transportation corridors development, their advantages and outlook within the context of the Transeuroasian transport logistics and transit. This is the key part of the international partnership in Central Asia and, at the same time, one of Russia’s foreign policy priorities.

Serik Akhmetov, Prime Minister of the Republic of Kazakhstan opened the Forum, Vladimir Yakunin, President of Russian Railways and Askar Mamin, Head of National Company Kazakhstan Temir Zholy (Kazakhstan Railways) took part in the opening ceremony. In their presentations, they noted the importance attached to the transport networks in the Common Economic Space, pointed to the efforts towards establishing a joint transport and logistics company between Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan. Implementation of this initiative will increase the transit capacity of Asia – Europe region and competitiveness of railway transportation on the transport services market and also will foster establishment of a stable system of Eurasian transportation corridors.

ACIG experts took part in the work of the Forum upon the invitation of the Eurasian Business Council. The materials provided by the ACIG experts were included in the final version of the Forum Declaration and contain the following idea: “Strategic location of the region can explain its role as a land bridge which connects the Caucasus, Europe, the Russian Federation, Middle East, East and South Asia and offers great opportunities for transport and commercial links with the emerging economies of the regions. The collapse of the Soviet Union and the opening of the western borders of the People's Republic of China lead to the reestablishment of the Eurasian region as a continuous continental area with Central Asia situated on its crossroads”.

The Business Forum “Strategic Partnership 1520” provided a platform for systems decisions on the key issues of the railway sector operation, in particular, modernization of the existing infrastructure and creating new transport infrastructure projects.