Turkmenistan ‘Essential’ For Lapis Lazuli Corridor Connectivity: International Road Transport Union

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Lapis Lazuli Corridor a Vital Eurasian Land Link

Turkmenistan plays an important role in the successful development of international transport corridors, the International Road Transport Union (IRU) has stated. “The support of the Government of Turkmenistan will be essential for the successful development of international transport corridors, in particular the “Lapis Lazuli” https://www.silkroadbriefing.com/news/2017/12/05/china-funded-lapis-lazuli-transport-corridor-unites-caucasus-central-asia/ corridor, to further ensure regional connectivity, prosperity and ultimately peace,” said the IRU. The Lapis Lazuli Corridor aims to enhance regional economic cooperation and connectivity between Afghanistan, Turkmenistan, Azerbaijan, Georgia, and Turkey, and will expand economic and cultural links between Europe and Asia. In doing so, the initiative seeks to improve transport infrastructure and procedures (including for road, rail, and sea), increase exports, and expand the economic opportunities of the countries benefiting from this new transport corridor. The corridor is named after the Lapis Lazuli semi-precious blue coloured stone which has been mined in Afghanistan for millennia.

Afghanistan, Turkmenistan, Azerbaijan, Georgia, and Turkey signed an agreement in 2017 on the creation of the Lapis Lazuli transport corridor, which is set to connect the five countries.

In order for this to happen, all countries located along these routes must coordinate cross-border issues at the global and regional levels. “At the same time, these countries need to move faster to the digitalization of transport documents and procedures, as well as use best practices and global standards to solve other problems when crossing borders. It will also strengthen Turkmenistan’s role as a trade and transit hub in the region” the IRU said. The organization stressed that Turkmenistan and IRU have been cooperating fruitfully for more than two decades since the country joined the International Road Transport (TIR) Convention in 1996.

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