TransCaspian - 2009
The 8th "TransCaspian" International Transport and Logistics Exhibition took place on 2 - 5 June
in the Heydar Aliyev Sport and Exhibition Complex. Official support was provided by the Ministry of Transport
of the Republic of Azerbaijan, the Permanent Secretariat of the Intergovernmental Commission TRASECA, the
Chamber of Commerce and Industry of the Republic of Azerbaijan and the Azerbaijan Export and Investment
Promotion Foundation. The organisers of the exhibition were Iteca Caspian, part of the ITE Group.
A press conference dedicated to the opening of "TransCaspian" was held a few days before the
exhibition. The press conference was attended by Mr. Namik Hasanov, Chief of the Secretariat Department
under the Ministry of Transport of the Republic of Azerbaijan; Mr Elnur Omarov, Chief of the Department
of Development and Scientific Technical Policy of the Ministry of Transport of the Republic of Azerbaijan;
and the organisers of the exhibition. Besides the exhibition, those present at the press conference
discussed the economic issues related to the development of Azerbaijan's transport system and how to
improve the quality of services. Journalists were particularly interested in why "TransCaspian"
was being jointly held with the major event of the Caspian region, the international Caspian Oil & Gas
exhibition. According to the organisers, the decision was based on the fact that many of the sectors
are related and because of the wishes of those participating in the TransCaspian exhibition. It was
highlighted at the press conference that the exhibition is an excellent opportunity for companies to
demonstrate their products and services, and to increase their chance of gaining authorisation to
participate in proposed tenders. With proper authorisation and proof of revenue transparency, it will
be easier for companies to compete for tenders, which, because of the large volume of work necessary
to restore roads and infrastructure, are being put forward by the Ministry of Transport of the Republic
of Azerbaijan and other structures and companies.
In this year's exhibition 37 companies from seven countries - including Russia, Ukraine and Kazakhstan
- took part. A large number of local companies participated in the event. The main sections of the
exhibition were: automobile transport, transportation of oil products, railway transport, shipbuilding,
expedition of freight, maritime transport, logistics, railroads: equipment and technical facilities, customs
services, freight insurance, road-constructing machinery, loading-unloading equipment and others. Further
information about the exhibition's participants is available at.
Together with commercial organisations, government bodies regularly take part in the exhibition. These
include: the Ministry of Transport of the Republic of Azerbaijan, Azerbaijan State Railways, the Azerbaijan
State Caspian Shipping Company, AvtoNagliyyatService, and AzerRoadService.
The effect of the financial crisis has been particularly felt in the transport sector and correspondingly
in logistics. However, there are some positives here. Neither the crisis, as result of which the volume of
freight traffic has dropped sharply; nor falling oil prices; nor, most importantly, the massive problems with
the incompatibility of rail tracks, have in any way affected the railways: Azerbaijan Railways and industry
professionals are considering ambitious plans. At their stand, representatives of the state company spoke in
detail about Azerbaijan's participation in the project "North-South", which will link Western Europe by rail
to India via Russia, Azerbaijan and Iran. The Azerbaijani part of the railway is ready. The project will
increase goods traffic between the EU and Asia, as the project's sphere of influence will affect at least 23
The Permanent Secretariat of TRASEKA was also present at the exhibition. According to the Intergovernmental
Commission, the successor to the Silk Route, which will connect Europe and Asia, presents opportunities for
quickly overcoming the crisis, as the project will significantly reduce the distance between western and southern
countries, thereby boosting the wider economy.
One of the most striking and informative exhibition stands belonged to Avtolucks (Russia) - a logistics and
expedition business offering freight transportation throughout Russia and the CIS, and international road haulage.
The spirit of the times could be felt at the stand: next to a model of a very old caravan were miniature models of
the trucks used today to transport cargo. The businessmen who visited the stand were particularly interested in the
opportunities to receive a quality service at an affordable price.
As usual, a number of events took place during the exhibition. This year, they included meetings between businessmen,
a discussion of future joint ventures and seminars. On the second day of the exhibition, the national carrier, Air
Astana, led a seminar on the topic "Long-haul flights: quality of service and a special loyalty programme". At the
end of the seminar, free business class tickets were raffled off to participants, so everyone went away with a memorable
Holding the exhibition jointly with Caspian Oil and Gas had a positive affect on visitor numbers. Ten thousand
professionals, from both Azerbaijan and abroad, visited the event over the four days. The guests witnessed the dynamic
development of the transport sector and were able to assess the market.
"TransCaspian 2009" brought together major freight companies, forwarding agents, rail and port operators, and
manufacturers of loading and unloading equipment. The event was a meeting place for the whole industry and a platform
for companies to exchange experiences, demonstrate the latest industry technology and establish contacts for further