International Marketplace Seminar 2023 was held in Istanbul on 20-21 November 2023, with the participation of international transportation sector organizations and private sector representatives, within the framework of the theme of shaping the future of multimodal logistics - connecting regions.
The 'International Marketplace Seminar 2023', hosted by our company and held in cooperation with UIC (International Railway Union) and FIATA (International Transport Organisers), focused on the developments regarding Eurasian Transport Corridors.
Deputy General Manager Çetin Altun, FIATA President Turgut Erkeskin, UIC General Manager François Davenne, FIATA General Manager Stephane Graber, UTIKAD President Ayşem Ulusoy, UIC Passenger Services Director and Middle East Coordinator Marc Guigon and senior officials attended the seminar.
'The share of the railway sector in transportation investments is increasing day by day'
In his speech at the opening, our Deputy General Manager Çetin Altun stated that the development of the railway sector in Turkey is of great importance not only for Turkey, but also for the development of countries in a wide hinterland from Asia to Europe, the Middle East, the Caucasus and Africa, and said the following: :
“This seminar, which was held with the theme of 'Shaping the Future of Multimodal Logistics - Connecting Regions', is a very important platform. I would like to thank and congratulate everyone who contributed to this meeting.
As our railway sector enters a process of total change and transformation with the railway priority policies implemented since 2002, our Turkey also stands out in terms of international railway corridors. I would like to briefly talk about what we have achieved as a result of these policies that have been implemented in our country for the last 22 years. Namely;
First of all, while the line capacity and capability was increased with the renewal and modernization of our existing railway network, the construction of high-speed railway lines that also allow freight transportation was started, and the law on the liberalization of railway transportation was enacted to ensure the participation of the private sector. In addition, the national and local railway industry was supported and the entire railway industry, from rails to switches, from wheels to train sets, was developed. In parallel with the mentioned targets, the share of the railway sector in transportation investments is increasing day by day. In line with these goals, our General Directorate of TCDD Taşımacılık AŞ, which has been operating since January 1, 2017; It provides passenger and freight transportation services on a railway network with a total length of 11.668 kilometers, including 2.251 kilometers of conventional lines and 13.919 kilometers of high-speed lines.”
Altun pointed out that while TCDD Transportation carries nearly a million people a day within the scope of passenger transportation within the international rules for railway transportation, it also carries out domestic freight transportation as well as freight transportation from Europe to Central Asia, the Middle East and Russia. "The Marmaray Bosphorus Tube Crossing, which provides uninterrupted railway transportation between the Asian and European continents, and the Baku-Tbilisi-Kars (BTK) Railway Line, which was opened on October 30, 2017, have become a turning point in terms of international railway corridors. Thus, BTK Railway Line and Middle Corridor, which provide transportation from China to Turkey in 12 days, from China to Europe in 18 days, and from Turkey to Russia in 8 days, are shorter, more economical and safer than the Northern Corridor and maritime transportation. It stands out as a corridor. On the other hand, while it is aimed to increase annual transportation between Turkey and Iran to 1 million tons, transit cargo transportation initiated from different connection points through Iran continues to increase.”
Emphasizing that the services of the Islamabad-Tehran-Istanbul (ITI) Freight Train have been restarted within the scope of the southern railway transport corridors, Altun also said that within the scope of the United Nations World Food Program, from our country to Afghanistan and Pakistan via the Iran (İnceburun) - Turkmenistan (Etrek) border connection. Stating that aid transportation to Europe continues, he said the following about transportation to Europe:
“Restrictions on the road during the pandemic period have brought truck bed transportation, especially by rail, to the fore. New train services were put into service to meet the increasing demand. Currently on the European side Çerkezköy Truck body transportation from Çatalca and Çatalca continues and there are 9 mutual trips per week. Studies are continuing to provide truck bed transportation from different points in our country and Europe.
"In addition, with the development of the national and local railway industry, our vehicle fleet becomes stronger and the variety and quantity of cargo increases."
In the seminar he attended online, UIC General Manager François Davenne stated that this event adds value to the business world and logistics sector, and that the combination of multimodal transportation is in a central position in the sector and that this event creates important opportunities for value, predictability and the emergence of new business opportunities.
“Efficient and safe transition in the supply chain are two important issues for best trade”
Stating that Turkey is geographically important and an indispensable country for Central Asia and the Caspian Region, that is, the Middle Corridor, FIATA General Manager Stephane Graber said:
“FIATA is a membership-based, non-governmental organization representing freight forwarders in approximately 150 countries. As FIATA, we support trade facilitation issues. Efficient and safe transition in the supply chain are two important issues for best trade. We will continue to work on transportation corridors. “I hope to create very productive negotiations and networks,” he said.
After the opening speeches, the session speeches of the seminar started.
The first session was held within the framework of new opportunities in Eurasian trade from a policy and investment perspective and was moderated by Matthew Bryza, responsible for Europe and Eurasia at the Former White House and Department of State. To the session; Deputy Director General for EU and Foreign Affairs of the Ministry of Transport and Infrastructure Aziz Aksu, TITR Secretary General Gaidar Abdikerimov, World Bank Senior Transport Expert Andrew Losos, OTIF Legal Department Head Aleksandr Kuzmenko, UN Economic Commission for Europe Roel Janssens, Policy Analysis and Transport Modeler Yaroslav Kholodov are panelists. Participated as.
Aziz Aksu, Deputy Director General of EU and Foreign Relations of the Ministry of Transport and Infrastructure, stated that they are closely monitoring the transportation corridors and working to improve them.
During the session, developments and progress regarding the significant increase in cargo volume in the Central and Southern Corridors, especially in recent years, research and evaluation of the opportunities emerging in Eurasian Trade from policy and investment perspectives, and evaluations were made regarding the growth and development of trade in the main corridors connecting Europe and Asia. .
The second session was held within the framework of business perspectives for the Middle Corridor and the agile transformation of the logistics industry. While the moderator was DB Cargo Transasia Administrative Manager Alona Zhdanova, Sinotrans Limited Company General Manager Gao Chunming, Hazar Denizi Container Company Chairman Murat Seitnepesov, TCDD Transportation Freight Department Vice President Oktay Aydınoğlu, HOYER Group Country Manager Ekin Tirman, CLF Cargo CEO Jan Bach attended the panel as a speaker.
The panel evaluated the demand for rail transportation in the Central Corridor, investigated effective ways to eliminate operational disruptions, and evaluated how freight forwarders can provide transportation services from Asia to Europe in a safe and reliable manner in order to meet increasing customer expectations.
On the second day of the International Marketplace Seminar 2023, the third session titled "Business Perspectives for the Southern Corridor - Evaluation of New Multimodal Logistics Solutions" was held.
Then, technical site visits were carried out with visits to the Marmaray Vehicle Maintenance Workshop and TCDD Marmaray Traffic Command Center.