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    Containers are dear to us everywhere // Their export from the Far East will be stimulated by a discount

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    Russian Railways has introduced a discount of more than 20% for the transportation of loaded containers on the Far Eastern Railway in gondola cars. This measure should stimulate the unloading of the ports of the Far East. But even taking into account the discount, the tariff is still higher than for the transportation of empty gondola cars, which usually leave ports after unloading coal. According to experts, the scheme will not be a systematic solution to the problem.

    of all stations of the Far Eastern Railway (FER), the monopoly reported on September 27, citing a board decision. The discount will be valid until the end of the year.

    The problem of the accumulation of container cargo in the ports of the Far East escalated in the summer and was associated, in particular, with the opening of large Chinese ports after quarantines. The head of FESCO, Arkady Korostelev, on the sidelines of the VEF, said that the peak of cargo traffic occurred in the summer months, but now the Vladivostok Commercial Sea Port (VMTP) controlled by the group has a record number of containers – more than 30 thousand TEU.

    Global Ports (which manages, in particular, the Eastern Stevedoring Company, VSK, in the port of Nakhodka) reported to Kommersant that they are observing a high load of VSK, as well as other ports of the Far East basin: “Factors that affect the high load of warehouses: workload and serious restrictions on the carrying capacity of the railway infrastructure of the Far Eastern Railway; a significant decrease in shipments of export containers on railway platforms to the Far Eastern ports from late August to early September; traditional imbalance between exports and imports in favor of imports”. At a meeting on September 26 with First Deputy Prime Minister Andrei Belousov, Minister of Transport Vitaly Savelyev said that in order to achieve optimal operation of the Far East terminals, it is necessary to reduce their level of packing by 20%.

    This measure, they add there, also can increase the efficiency of the use of the railway infrastructure of the Eastern landfill by reducing the empty run.

    cost-effectively as quickly as possible to return empty to the place of loading. Russian Railways JSC explained to Kommersant that the transportation of an empty car over the same distance would still be cheaper. “However, the introduced discount may serve as an incentive for operators to carry out side-by-side loading,” monopolies added.

    The market assessed the attractiveness of Russian Railways’ proposals differently. “Recently, there has been a demand on the market for the delivery of products in containers loaded into gondola cars,” says the First Freight Company (PGK). “The discount provided is an additional bonus and will spur interest in this technology, since it will transportation.” But, according to Global Ports, the proposed measures will not contribute to the unloading of ports. “The use of gondola cars for container transportation is inefficient neither in terms of the speed of cargo handling (the ratio of the time of loading a container onto a fitting platform and into a gondola car is 1:16), nor from the point of view of the cost of work, this technology also requires the involvement of additional production personnel and represents a greater the risk of damage to cargo,” the company notes, adding that an effective solution would be to ensure sufficient shipment of platforms in an easterly direction. that the interest of Russian Railways in such a scheme is growing. However, it does not look like a systemic solution for the removal of containers from ports: most likely, we will talk about single shipments. The main question is whether overloaded terminals have the ability to carry out such shipments, since loading a container into gondola cars is an order of magnitude slower than onto a platform. For operators and cargo owners, in the expert’s opinion, this scheme is of limited interest, since a surplus of gondola cars, although observed, is not in the Far East, where the main problem is a lack of carrying capacity and a shortage of locomotive traction.

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