President Ilham Aliyev familiarizes with passenger train to run by Baku-Tbilisi-Kars rail route


April 3, Fineko/ Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev familiarized himself with the passenger train that will run on the Baku-Tbilisi-Kars railway line.

Javid Gurbanov, chairman of Azerbaijan Railways (ADY) informed the country’s president that on 29 March a 10-car passenger train produced by Swiss company Stadler Rail Group arrived in Baku through Turkey and Georgia.

"Before that, the train was tested in Akhalkalaki. For the movement of trains in Turkey, a new installation was installed to change wheel pairs on cars from 1520 to 1435 mm at border point Georgia-Turkey-Georgia. It consists of 9 passenger cars and a restaurant. Cars were produced in four categories: "Standard", "Comfort", "Business" and "Restaurant". Depending on the category, the car has 10, 20 and 32 seats," Gurbanov said.

The organization of passenger transportation via Baku-Tbilisi-Kars route is scheduled for this year. In accordance with the agreement signed between Azerbaijan Railways CJSC and Swiss Stadler Rail Group, it is expected that 10 more cars will be delivered for the second stage.

In general, the train is designed to carry 246 passengers in one direction and has the ability to travel at a speed of 160 km/h. In addition, each car is equipped with a diesel generator that will ensure smooth operation of cars for 24 hours in case of a locomotive failure.

Baku-Tbilisi-Kars railway was put into operation on 30 October 2017. Currently, this route is used for transportation of goods. At the initial stage, up to 1 million passengers and 6.5 million tons of cargo are expected to be carried via BTK rail line. However, transportation along this corridor is planned to reach 20-22 million tons of cargo a year.