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            october 18, 2019

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New services afoot in European rail freight with focus on China expansion


China Railway Container Transport Co and the Czech Republic's CD Cargo have signed a memorandum on strategic co-operation that paves the way for a freight service to be launched between the two countries in the near future. CRCT also intends to use CD Cargo's warehouses in Lovosice.
The European Commission has given the green light to a EUR70 million (US$78.94 million) programme to shift road freight to rail in the Netherlands in 2019-23. All operators with a ProRail access agreement are eligible for a contribution to the cost of track access charges, which they are required to pass on to shippers through price cuts, said London's UK Railway Gazette in a news roundup.
P&O Ferrymasters has expanded its intermodal network to offer six rail services per week from Budapest to Duisburg and Rotterdam, with a short sea connection for the UK. The transit time between Budapest and British ports ranges between three and four days.
United Transport and Logistics Company - Eurasian Rail Alliance (UTLC ERA) transported 9,970 TEU of transit freight through the Kaliningrad region of Russia last year, including 6,300 TEU from Europe to China and 3,670 TEU from China to Europe. In the first half of this year total transit through the region rose to 6,096 TEU, and the company predicts volumes will grow further.
"We have opened a new corridor in the Kaliningrad region where there are two ports which we can use to bypass railway bottlenecks at the boundary between 1,520 mm and EU gauges and deliver containers by short sea to major European ports: Hamburg, Rostock and those in Nordic countries," said UTLC ERA president Alexey Grom.
UTLC ERA and Lanzhou Anting PIL Logistics are joining forces to develop China-Europe-China container traffic. UTLC ERA would be handle the 1,520 mm gauge rail transport, while Lanzhou Anting PIL Logistics would be responsible for finding Chinese customers.
Aurizon, Australia's leading rail freight operator, has opened a remodelled regional training hub for western Australia in Kalgoorlie. Facilities for training drivers and other staff include virtual reality technology.

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