on the southeastern shore of the Black Sea. Until the 1880’s it handled small ships and had an insignificant tonnage turnover. The construction of a railroad (1883), moorings for tankers and oceangoing cargo ships (1892), and a pipeline between Baku and Batumi encouraged the rapid development of the port for shipping Baku’s oil by sea to home ports on the Black Sea and abroad. In the years 1954–66 the moorages through which general (piece) and bulk freight is transshipped were reconstructed, the port was deepened to admit passenger ships, high-production transshipping devices were installed, and a ship terminal was built. First place in the port’s tonnage turnover is held by oil, which is sent abroad on Soviet and foreign tankers. The port is important for passenger transport as the end point of the Crimea-Caucasian lines as well as of the lines for ships completing tourist voyages along the shores of the USSR and to the countries of Europe, Asia, and Africa. Batumi is the main base of Georgian maritime steam shipping.
A. D. POLIKARPOV