Source: Draft Report: Unified Policy on Transit Fees and Tariffs
According to Polyakov (2001) a truck with a capacity of 10-20 tons transiting Georgia was to
pay an equivalent of US$245 in local currency in October 2000. A similar vehicle transiting the
Armenian territory was to pay US$197 equivalent in local currency. For cargo bound to Georgia
the fee was US$80 higher. In addition to official fees, transit shipments currently face pervasive
informal fees. According to data gathered in early 2002, a truck transporting a 20 feet container
from Yerevan to the Port of Poti incurs ordinary transport costs of around US$800. These
include the drivers’ remuneration, terminal handling cost at the port of Poti and customs related
fees. Transport of a container (TEU) by road from Baku to Bandar Abbas (2,800km/US$1,500)
costs only slightly more than the same transport from Baku to Poti (950 km/US$1,300), despite a
distance three times higher. Transport of a container (TEU) by road from Poti to Yerevan costs
US$1,845 for only 650 km compared to US$1,700 for 2,800 km from Yerevan to Bandar Abbas
(TTFSC Policy Note).
Almost prohibitive additional costs are incurred, if the truck will go from Yerevan through
Georgia to Russia or other CIS countries. Typically, the driver has to pay US$1,800 – 2,000 for
the so-called “02 guard service” provided by the Ministry of National Security. Unless this “02
service” is taken, the driver meets difficulties with the road police and/or organized local gangs,
and he is likely to face costs amounting to US$1,500 – US$2,000.
On the rail mode, the unofficial fees from Armenia to Georgia amount to between 6-13 percent
of the total cost, but the time expenditures for the land-based legs increase markedly. In reality
delay of border crossing averages 4-5 days, requiring a Customs official at the border to send a
telex to the regional customs house to confirm cargo and delivery time.