Ukraine joins the Trans-Caspian transport route
Ukrainian Infrastructure Minister Volodymyr Omelyan announced on his Facebook page that Ukraine has joined the Trans-Caspian international transport route and reached an agreement to reduce tariffs for transportation of containers along the so-called "New Silk Road.” Director for Freight Transport and Logistics at PJSC Ukrzaliznytsia Ivan Fedorko signed the relevant protocol in Tbilisi on May 17th.
"It was agreed to reduce the transportation rate from $5,559 to $3,980 per 40-foot container from Izov to the border with China (Dostyk). We are working on reducing the transportation costs on the Silk Road. We will succeed!” he wrote.
On 15 January 2016, the Ministry of Infrastructure, together with Ukrzaliznytsia, launched the trial run of a container train on the New Silk Road. The train followed a route through Ukraine–Georgia–Azerbaijan–Kazakhstan–China (across the Caspian and Black seas) and reached China on the 16th day, the evening of January 30th.
Later, Fedorko stated that stable transport services of a container train on the New Silk Road require Ukraine’s membership in the Trans-Caspian international transport route and development of a single through tariff.
Omelyan noted that the first trial run of the train on this route was successful in political terms but technically it was not properly organized. He emphasized that Ukraine hit the mark with this project.
On April 7th, a train with empty containers left Dostyk station (Kazakhstan) and was expected to arrive in Chernomorsk on April 19th. It returned to Ukraine two days ahead of schedule.
Ukrzaliznytsia noted that the regularity of container train transport services is determined by market demand. That is why they examined the potential flow of cargo that can be reoriented towards container train transport.