Poland has Europe’s fourth largest railway network. As it has been financially underfunded and disregarded for a long time, major investment programmes are currently in progress. Around 9000 km of track are to be modernised, 8500 km of which adapted for high-speed trains. In addition, bridges, tunnels, switches and control centres will be upgraded to the latest state of the art. The importance of rail traffic in Poland is growing, also in the freight transport sector: In 2017, rail freight traffic increased by eight percent to 240 million tons. There is great potential for growth in the intermodal sector, which has a rather low share of rail traffic (six percent) compared with Western European countries. In 2017, however, there was already an increase of 15 percent over the previous year to almost 15 million tonnes. The RCG has a strong presence on the Polish market in both the intermodal and forwarding sectors.
Upswing at Rail Cargo Logistics – Poland (RCL-PL)
The Rail Cargo Group has been active on the Polish forwarding and transport market for end customers for 20 years. In 2014, today’s Rail Cargo Logistics – Poland was founded through the merger of Express Polska and Express Interfracht – Polska. The last few years have been very successful; in 2018, the transport volume of more than one million tons will be four times as high as two years ago. Around 30 employees at three locations – Warsaw, Bedzin and Malaszewice – act as contact persons for customers in Poland and organise individual logistics solutions with a European orientation for the mining and steel industry, the wood and paper industry, the agricultural industry, the mineral oil and chemical industry as well as the automotive and construction industries. Direct access to the international standard and broad-gauge railway network makes individual complete solutions possible in the CIS states. Therefore RCL-PL also handles international transports on various routes in Central Europe, Italy, Turkey and even the CIS countries in addition to domestic transports. Together with Rail Cargo Logistics – Austria (RCL-AT), RCL-PL also organises timber transports with a focus on round timber. At the moment these are two to three block trains per month as well as loads in single wagon traffic from various dispatch stations in Poland to various destinations in Austria. There are also trains to Poland from the domestic market: in 2017, 21,000 tonnes of paper were transported on 400 wagons in the TransFER Austria to Poland.
High-frequency connections by Rail Cargo Operator (RCO)
Rail Cargo Operator provides high-frequency intermodal long-distance services, linking rail with land transport and sea freight. Rail Cargo Operator – CSKD also has its own branch in Warsaw and offers services within Poland as well as cross-border to Russia, Belarus, Slovakia, the Czech Republic and Kazakhstan. Currently one train runs daily between Zebrzydowice (Poland) and Kaliningrad (Russia) or Zebrzydowice and Brest (Belarus). Parts for the automotive sector are transported.
Poland is an interesting growth market for the RCG, not least because the country on the Baltic Sea is located at the westernmost end of the trade route of the planned new Silk Road and could function as a bridge between East and West.