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Turkish transit fees will increase prices in Georgia

By Messenger Staff
Monday, March 22
The Turkish Transport Ministry's recent decision to impose transit fees on cars travelling through Turkey has created much comment in Georgia. Most analysts think that products entering Georgia from Europe via Turkey will become more expensive. Avtandil Silagadze thinks that the Turkey is doing this to make up for budget shortfalls. Loaded vehicles will pay 1,200 euro into the Turkish budget and empty ones 600 euro. This regulation will affect Georgian drivers from May 1, 2010.

The regulation will eventually encourage Georgian customers to use Turkish cargo carriers and forwarders, while Georgian ones lose out. Analysts think that the transit fees will force Georgian businessmen to look for alternative routes, for example sending cargo to Poti via the Bulgarian port of Varna could increase, reviving this route and increasing the revenues of Poti Port. Some analysts even suggest that transit fees for vehicles passing through Georgia from Turkey, as well as from Russia and Armenia, could increase.