According to international experts, there will be a significant increase in transport volumes between China and Europe in the coming years. The challenge now is to bundle sustainable, efficient production systems across national borders. The aim is to connect large industrial centres on the Eurasian continent and to create strategic hubs for efficient rail freight transport along the existing corridors. In addition to the expansion of the Russian broad gauge via Slovakia to Vienna, the Rail Cargo Group is taking a significant step towards intensifying freight transports on the Silk Road Route. Not only is the joint production cooperation with PJSC TransContainer, Russia’s largest and leading intermodal container transport and logistics provider, to be intensified but a joint venture is also to be established by the end of the year. The aim is to offer efficient and reliable end-to-end logistics solutions from a single source. Together with RZD, synergies are to be increased by bundling know-how and transport flows in the existing networks and more volume generated with the use of more efficient production systems. Another goal is to optimise throughput times. In future, the Asia-Europe corridor is to be covered with an average transport time of less than 10 days. In addition, digitised document systems, such as paperless customs clearance, are to be developed and established. In concrete terms, this means that the freight documents required for transport will be digitised and customs clearance will be paperless.
Big visions with strong partners
By significantly reducing the transport time between China and Europe by up to 20 days compared to sea freight, the northern route of the Silk Road is to be made more efficient. This makes it all the more important to further intensify the close cooperation between the two railway companies that has existed for many years. At the beginning of July, the first RZD – ÖBB High Level Meeting was held at ÖBB head office in Vienna Central Station. The broad gauge project and joint projects in the field of freight transport and logistics were on the agenda. Both ÖBB CEO Andreas Matthä and Oleg Belozerov, CEO of Russian Railways, are confident that the plans and projects will be realised. The ÖBB delegation has already been invited to the next High Level Council 2019 in Russia by its partners of RZD – we are looking forward to it!