A private Kazakh carrier, together with Georgian partners, plans to launch a port terminal in October this year as part of the development of the Trans-Caspian International Transport Route (TMTM).
PTC Holding LLP signed an investment agreement on the implementation of an infrastructure project in Tbilisi on June 2, which involves the construction of a multimodal terminal in the Georgian port of Poti with a capacity of 80 thousand containers (in 20-foot equivalent) per year.
“Negotiations with Georgian partners have started since the beginning of this year. The President of our country has been talking all last year and setting tasks for the implementation of infrastructure projects and the expansion of bottlenecks in logistics. As part of this policy, PTC Holding decided to implement the project after visiting the ports of Poti and Batumi,” said Olzhas Arykbayev, Development Director of PTC Holding LLP.
The geopolitical situation emerging due to the events in Ukraine has seriously affected global logistics, including the traditional routes of Kazakhstan’s exports and imports. In this situation, President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev has repeatedly spoken about the need to diversify transport routes, especially in terms of the development of the Trans-Caspian International Transport Route (TMTM) or the Middle Corridor as an alternative to passing through the territory of Russia.
In particular, during his visit to China in May, he explicitly stated that “the development of the Trans-Caspian route is important for boosting transit between Europe and Asia.” According to Kassym-Jomart Tokayev, special attention of business should be focused on the construction of modern transport infrastructure.
“We have built the largest terminal in Dostyk with a capacity of 320 thousand containers per year. Last year we handled about 100 thousand containers, this year there will be more. We have opened a company in Shanghai, now we are registering a company in Istanbul, thanks to our partners from Georgia, because the new terminal in Poti is a logical continuation of our work to develop the transit potential of Kazakhstan,” Daniyar Abulgazin, a shareholder of PTC Holding, commented on the event.
“This is a precedent when Georgian businessmen and businessmen of Kazakhstan start building such a large-scale infrastructure project. This is a historic event for Georgia and Kazakhstan. PTC Holding is a very important player in the TMTM corridor, and we are glad to have such cooperation,” said Mamuka Merkviladze, a shareholder of Invest Group Georgia.
At the moment, an important direction of the holding’s development is the implementation of infrastructure projects, including the construction of transport and logistics terminals on the main international land corridors between the countries of Europe and the People’s Republic of China.
In this logic, a completely natural solution is the construction of reference points in the form of multimodal terminals on nodal transport routes, in particular, in Georgia.
Since the port of Poti is the final point of cargo transportation via TMTM on the Black Sea, the construction of a container terminal will allow Kazakh businesses to participate in the formation of cargo flows, as well as create favorable tariff conditions on this route for Kazakhstani exporters and attract additional volumes of transit cargo through the Republic of Kazakhstan.
“PTC Holding is a strategic partner for us on this TMTM site. There is already an agreement with LG Electronics to ship cargo by sea to the port of Poti. The cargo will leave South Korea, Vietnam, Indonesia via Poti,” Aidar Dzheksembiev, CEO of LX Pantos CO, shared his opinion.
The project itself will be implemented in a fairly short time. PTC Holding hopes that the terminal will work in October this year.
“If we talk about specific deadlines, then after the signing of the agreement, the terminal will be built within 4-5 months, its launch is planned in October-November of this year,” said Timur Karabayev, Chairman of the Board of PTC Holding.
As for the financing of construction, it will be 100% private investment.
“The costs will be made on a parity basis: 50% is the share of PTC Holding, 50% is the share of Georgian partners in advance in the amount of about 10 million US dollars,” Timur Karabayev said.