Ten years ago, the first Yuxinou train departed from Chongqing. Over the past ten years, the volumes of China-Europe freight trains has developed rapidly, bringing changes in the global supply chain. The joining of many international operators and service providers have made this industry full of vitality and opportunities. RTSB has been a service provider along the New Silk Road for almost ten years, now. The first block train of RTSB between Germany and China was operated in 2013, from Duisburg to Shanghai via Mongolia. Artur Ballardt, RTSB’s Managing Director talked with New Silkroad Discovery about their story and thoughts about the development of this industry.
Up to 15 trains per day from over 30 cities
“We were already focused on intermodal railway transportation between Europe and the CIS countries, so it was an obvious step for us to extend our service to include China. It was a great moment operating our first regular trains from Zhengzhou to Hamburg.” According to Artur Ballardt, RTSB Group took on a pioneering role over these years, by opening further routes and developing new stable products along the New Silk Road. “Today we are running up to 15 trains per day from over 30 cities, using different routes such as Brest, Kaliningrad and the south route to Turkey. Every new train product is still very special to us and motivates us to go further.”
This sector still look forward to further development. How could it be and what should be done? — We strongly believe the sector will grow further in the upcoming 5-10 years. During the pandemic we were able to prove the value of our products and the demand for rail freight transportation has been growing ever since. In this regard it is important to further improve our services in order to stay competitive and process additional volumes, said Artur Ballardt.
Digitalization, new hubs and alternative gateways
“Digitalization will play a key role, as well as the establishment of new hubs and alternative gateways. Traffic must be spread out across different hubs in order to achieve faster transit times instead of jamming up at just a few. Digital customs procedures will hopefully further reduce waiting times at borders and ease customs processes.” added the Managing Director of RTSB.
Since the year 2012, block train operations has become a very important business area for RTSB. In 2020 there were over 4000 trains operated, most of them between China and Europe. “we were able to extend our network, introduce new routes and create great partnerships. We are proud and honored to be part of this valuable project and will do our best to build on the achievements of the past ten years and contribute to an even more successful future”, he said.