The Trans-Caspian East-West Trade and Transit Corridor is a regional integrator, trade facilitator and viable transit connector between Europe and Asia. Comprising of Azerbaijan, Georgia and Turkey to the west, and Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan Uzbekistan and Afghanistan to the east of the Caspian Sea, this corridor brings together more than 200 million strong market and 400 billion in overall trade while connecting economies of the European Union and China along with access to Russia, Iran, Pakistan and India.
Connecting trade, people and economies, the modern trans-Caspian corridor has matured to strategic importance with an extensive and integrated network of infrastructure, special economic zones, harmonized customs, cross-border procedures and more along this route.
The United States has been playing an important role in the development of this corridor through joint initiatives to increase regional connectivity through oil and gas pipelines, to facilitate intra-regional cooperation and trade such as the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan oil pipeline, Baku-Tbilisi-Kars railway, Southern Gas Corridor, Lapis-Lazuli transport route and “C5+1” format. While these initiatives contributed to the increased business between the United States and the corridor countries concerned, the emerging business potential of the corridor is underexplored and trade with the US is significantly lagging behind in comparison with the EU and China.
Building on the strategic partnerships forged between the USA and the corridor countries concerned and emerging business potential of the region, the Trans-Caspian Forum presents a leading platform to discuss the US engagement with the strategically important TransCaspian corridor including investments and development of strategic infrastructure for benefiting the US, the corridor countries and the business community concerned.
Policy and business leaders from the USA and the Trans-Caspian corridor countries will come together at Third Trans-Caspian Forum on 17-18 May 2018 to discuss opportunities and challenges in enhancing their strategic engagement and explore business, trade and investment opportunities to the benefit of all concerned. Within the Forum framework, discussions will be held in the premises of the US Congress in partnership with the Central Asia and Caucasus Institute, the US Chamber of Commerce. The George Washington University will also host academic discussions to stimulate intellectual exchange on the way ahead.
The Caspian Policy Center and the US Chamber of Commerce are the co-organizers of the Forum along with the Embassies of Afghanistan, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Turkey, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan.