Kazakhstan Mulls Alternative Freight Routes

Photo: Ministry of Transport of Kazakhstan

On February 19th Kazakhstan’s deputy prime minister Serik Zhumangarin held a government meeting on the subject of road freight routes to and from Kazakhstan. 

According to the Ministry of Transport, last year 7.6m tons of goods were transported through the country by automobile transport, comprising 2.8m tons of exports and 4.8m tons of imports. Kazakhstan’s freight forwarders accounted for 50.2% of the total volume (Uzbekistan – 10.6%, Turkey – 5.5%, Russia – 3%, and Tajikistan – 2.5%.)

As an alternative to existing international routes, Kazakh officials proposed a route through Turkmenistan to Turkey. For this to happen, Kazakhstan’s visa procedures with Turkmenistan would need to be simplified. In addition, a route through Latvia was proposed as an alternative for the supply of goods to EU countries.

European countries accounted for 1.6m tons of the goods transported to and from Kazakhstan by road in 2023, with Kazakh companies carrying 50% of the total volume. However, the closure of all checkpoints for international road transport in Poland, and the availability of only one checkpoint on the border of Russia and Belarus, became serious obstacles to international trade.

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Times of Central Asia