Russian rail monopoly RZD is planning at the start of next year to introduce new services that will cut transit times by rail on some routes by 15 to 17 percent, the Journal of Commerce reports.
RZD hopes the reductions will make rail more attractive to shippers who overwhelmingly rely on trucking despite its higher costs because of the faster transit times. As a general rule, the cost of transportation by truck is 35 to 40 percent more expensive than rail and 50 to 60 percent faster.
RZD is accomplishing the transit time savings through the introduction of more door-to-door and just-in-time schemes and greater use of a single window for customs, according to a spokesperson for Oleg Belozerov, the head of RZD. The railway will also begin high-speed rail services for container cargo.
At present the average speed of container trains is 8.1 miles per hour because of slow operations, mainly related to rearranging and sorting containers and wagons on trains.
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