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Network focal points

Russian Railways adds terminal capacity for transportation between Russia and China
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The development of the network of transportation and logistics centers (TLC) is among Russian Railways’ priorities. To this end, in 2022 the holding company plans to implement a number of projects to create storage infrastructure at the main border crossing points. In particular, there are plans to open a new Zabaykalsk TLC in the east of the country, as well as a bonded warehouse at the Grodekovo station.

According to Alexei Belsky, Head of Russian Railways’ Central Directorate for Terminal and Warehouse Complex Management, some of the largest and most important projects in both transit and export-import traffic are the development of the Kaliningrad TLC and the Zabaikalsk railway checkpoint.

"Kaliningrad TLC makes it possible to use the international corridor between Europe and Asia in all types of railway connections," Alexey Belsky told Gudok. "Transit freight flows are focused on the central and northern parts of Europe. The current capacity of Kaliningrad TLC is 20 container trains per day (or 10 pairs of trains), and the processing capacity per year is 450 thousand TEUs (37.5 thousand TEUs per month or 1.25 thousand TEUs per day).

To ensure export-import and transit traffic, as well as uninterrupted operation of the Zabaikalsk railway checkpoint, Russian Railways is implementing the second milestone of Stage 1 of the station reconstruction, which provides for connecting the constructed public tracks, as well as transferring the transshipping areas and the freight terminal. This will speed up the transshipment of cars in the China-Russia service and ensure the processing of up to 20 pairs of trains per day in the long term.

The opening of Zabaikalsk TLC with a temperature warehouse is planned for this year. The estimated capacity of the center will exceed 453 thousand tons per year with an ability to handle 5 pairs of trains per day.

The Central Directorate for Terminal and Warehouse Complex Management is also working on the development of other railway checkpoints.

"No less important for the development of export-import transportation is the opening of bonded warehouses Valuiki on the Southeastern Railway and Grodekovo on the Far Eastern Railway," says Andrey Zybkin, Deputy Head of Russian Railways’ Central Directorate for Terminal and Warehouse Complex Management.

A source in the Far Eastern Directorate for Terminal and Warehouse Complex Management added that the Grodekovo transshipment complex is currently involved in the inspection of import and export cargoes, transshipment of cleared products from Chinese gauge railway cars to Russian gauge railway cars, and storage of transit containers in anticipation of Russian gauge rolling stock. All imported goods arriving in containers at the territory of the complex by road transport are accepted and placed in temporary storage.

Notably, the opening of a bonded warehouse at the Grodekovo railway station transshipment complex will allow unloading cargos from cars into the warehouse thus increasing the throughput capacity of the Grodekovo station. Now cars sometimes stand idle at the station awaiting customs clearance. The warehouse will also make it possible to protect imported goods, eliminate the possibility of diversion from the supervision of customs authorities, prevent third-party access to the cargo until customs clearance is completed, allow customs officials to freely conduct all necessary customs control measures, and ensure that the cargo remains in unchanged condition until customs procedures are completed.

The opening of the Valuiki bonded warehouse at the end of 2021, in turn, enabled consignors to submit imported and exported goods for customs inspection directly on the public railway infrastructure. In the near future Russian Railways plans to start using at the warehouse the "VED-Sklad" software produced by STM LLC, which is compatible with software products approved for use by customs authorities.

The strategic location of the Valuiki station makes the bonded warehouse a future-oriented component of the warehouse complex that meets current requirements for the storage and processing of goods, said the source in the Central Directorate.

It should be noted that the railway infrastructure of Russian Railways includes 156 container terminals, six of which were opened last year. Container trains can be formed at 58 terminals, while 14 terminals are equipped with outlets for connection of refrigerated containers, where the "storage with connection" service can be provided. By the end of 2021 more than 2 thousand trains were shipped from the container terminals of the Central Directorate for Terminal and Warehouse Complex Management, or 37% more than in 2020. The total volume of container handling operations has grown by 4%.

Anna Yakusheva

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