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Russian Railways Signs First European Freight Terminal

November 2008.

On 25 November, JSC TransContainer, Russian Railways subsidiary and the country’s biggest operator of rail containers, signed a 15-year lease with Cargo Slovakia (ZSSK Cargo), to take over the Dobra freight terminal located near the town of Koshitsa in Slovakia, OAO RZD's Department of Corporate Communications reports.

“This first European freight terminal is a major milestone in realizing the huge potential of the Trans-Siberian railway that runs West to East via a transcontinental transport corridor,” said Mr. Yakunin. “At the terminal there will be a transshipment of containers from the broad-gauge European standard cars to the narrow-gauge cars of JSC

The Dobra terminal, situated 10 km from the Ukrainian border, between the Pribenik and Czerna-nad-Tissou railway stations, features four narrow-gauge and four broad-gauge lines. According to Mr. Baskakov, the terminal has good potential for expansion, both within its own boundaries and on adjacent land.

“The terminal can handle over 250,000 twenty-foot equivalent units (TEU) a year, thanks to its convenient geographic location and infrastructure. To ensure that the terminal is managed efficiently and maximizes its operational capacities, TransContainer together with Cargo Slovakia plan to set up a dedicated subsidiary of TransContainer in the Republic of Slovakia, which will start operations in the first quarter of next year”, said
Mr. Baskakov.

“Currently, the Trans-Siberian Railway enables transportation of up to 100 million tons of cargo a year, including 300 000 TEU of international transit. In light of the growing demand for fast delivery of cargo from the Asian-Pacific region, the Dobra Freight Terminal with direct access to the center of the Europe is a strong argument for
consignors of goods,” commented Mr. Yakunin.

The lease on the terminal is part of a TransContainer project to develop container freight transportation along international transport corridor No.5. The plan is for containers to be shipped by sea from the Asia-Pacific region to the ports of Koper and Trieste, where they will be moved by regular block-trains to the Dobra terminal. There, the containers will be switched from European-gauge platforms to 1520 mm platforms before being transported
in block-trains to Russia and Ukraine (operator – TransContainer).

This set-up will cut 5,000 miles off the traditional sea route for container delivery, giving it a competitive advantage. We are confident that the Dobra terminal will become a reliable gateway for European freight, in the same way that Zaybakalsk acts as the railroad gateway into South Asia,” stated Mr. Baskakov.

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