Istanbul will become an important trade city with Kanal Istanbul: Transport Minister

Minister Karaismailoglu stated that Kanal Istanbul will make Istanbul the focus city of world trade and that they will start the project very soon, with the preparations for the tender.

Speaking to the AA correspondent, Adil Karaismailoglu, Minister of Transport and Infrastructure, drew attention to the fact that the national policies followed by the governments regarding the implementation of sovereign rights and commercial activities in Turkey’s lands and seas are known to the Turkish nation and the whole world.

Karaismailoglu underlined that the infrastructure works in the field of transportation, communication and logistics, which are one of the most important pillars of Turkey’s decades-old growth vision, are an indication of their claim.

Karaismailoglu said, “Turkey, as a country that dominates the most important commercial corridors of the developing world, will become the world’s most important logistics center together with the Kanal Istanbul, Istanbul Airport, Northern Marmara Highway, commercial ports, railway connections and logistics bases.” He stated that this structuring will increase Turkey’s economy and its share in world trade for decades to come.

Minister continued as follows:

“With the completion of Kanal Istanbul, the Marmara Region will be the center of Eurasia with its ports, logistics zones, railway connections, Marmaray and growing industry.

Designed within the framework of the Turkey Logistics Master Plan, this region will become the most important crossroads of world trade with the growth of the Middle Corridor from England to China. In this way, we will contribute to the sustainability of an independent and strong national economy, and realize our geopolitical potential in our field of national sovereignty.”

“The Black Sea will become a very important trade lake”

Karaismailoglu reminded that the stopping of the Suez Canal, which has an annual passage of 19 thousand ships, caused a daily loss of $9.6 billion to the world economy and set a precedent that should be learned.

Emphasizing that the world trade volume is increasing day by day, Karaismailoglu said, “Today, 90% of the trade volume, which is 12 billion tons, is transported by sea. World trade volume will be 25 billion tons in 2030 and 95 billion tons in 2050. This shows us that the cargo volumes in the sea will increase every year. In addition, with the increasing production and consumption population in Africa, a new North-South Corridor from the Black Sea to the South will arise. In the light of all these factors, we see that the Black Sea will become a very important trade lake in the coming years.”

Karaismailoglu stated that many ports in the Black Sea, such as Anaklia, Novorossisk, Constanta, Odessa, Sochi, have been expanded with investments and their capacities have been increased.

“In addition, within the scope of TEN-T investments, Danube-Rhine River connections and Danube River expansion works are continuing, so the cargo from Europe will be downloaded directly to the Black Sea at Constanta Port. With Viking Corridor investments, a corridor starting from the Baltic Sea, passing through the Baltic countries and descending to the Port of Odessa is being created. In addition to its existing ports, Turkey has increased its power in the Black Sea with investments in Rize Iyidere and Filyos Port. With the uncovered hydrocarbon reserves in the Caspian and natural gas reserves in the Black Sea, the energy mobility of the Black Sea will increase further.

The increasing freight traffic in the world and its transportation by sea, the efforts of countries to lower their cargo to the Black Sea and transfer them from the Straits to the south and to the Middle Corridor, the energy activity in the Black Sea and Caspian and the port investments in the Black Sea and Aegean coasts show us the following: Located at the intersection of the Middle Corridor and the North-South Corridor, Istanbul will be the focal city of world trade and the amount of cargo passing through the straits will increase every year.”

Accordingly, Karaismailoglu pointed out that a possible halt in the Bosphorus, where 78 thousand ships will pass annually in 2050, poses a risk that will cause serious damage to the world and the country’s economy. “The increase in ship volumes and the transportation of hazardous materials by these ships increased the dimensions of the risk further. The increasing demand for the Bosphorus crossing will make urban maritime traffic impossible, prolong ship waiting times and, most importantly, increase the probability of accidents that can cause environmental disasters.”

“Tender preparations for Kanal Istanbul continue”

Underlining that the Bosphorus is a difficult waterway to manage due to its sharp turns, undercurrents and heavy traffic, Karaismailoglu completed his words as follows:

“Waiting times, which are approximately 14 hours today, will reach 36-48 hours in the following years. This is a factor that will negatively affect the global trade flow. Kanal Istanbul was designed as an ideal waterway for ship passage. With an efficient logistics management, 100% safe passage of ships will be ensured within the scope of smart navigation systems with the support of the autonomous pilot who commands the ship without waiting.

This project is Turkey’s vision project. It is one of the biggest projects in the world. The project works and zoning plans of Kanal Istanbul have been completed and tender preparations are continuing. We are strong and determined to start this project very soon and to complete it in a short time.”

Source: AA / Translated by Irem Yildiz

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