posted on 5th May 2020 14:23
Negotiations with RZD on organisation of extra-long trains to the Kaliningrad region through Latvia were launched in October 2019 and in late February 2020 LDz signed an agreement on starting cooperation. In the past month several container trains have been sent through Latvia in transit from China. Transportation of all container trains on the China - Russia - Latvia - Lithuania - Kaliningrad route in the last month are organised in cooperation of LDz with TransContainer.
However one reason for creating of such long trains is inefficient loading scheme. If load equaling to 100 TEU is loaded on articulated 80-foot wagons, it results in a rake of between 650 to 660 m overall length without locomotive. Trains loaded with 96 TEU and fitting to 650 m length limit, locomotive including, are therefore common sight in some countries of central Europe using 1,435 mm gauge.
Interest in China to Europe rail freight is very high in recent time, however this actually being “thanks to” the Coronavirus crisis rather “in spite of” that. The reason is the recipients in Europe were in need to fill their stores as fast as possible after the economy in China started to work again. This results in some of the customers using normally the sea route switched to rail to achieve shorter delivery time.