Before that, only freight trains carrying imported goods came from China, while for the first time a train departed from Ukraine to China for export purposes. On September 28, Ukrainian railways Ukrzaliznytsia launched the first container train service in the history of independent Ukraine, loading export goods from Ukraine to the Chinese city of Xi’an.
The train departed from the Liski container terminal in Kiev. Containing 43 40-metre timber containers, the train will have to traverse approximately 10 kilometers across the four countries’ territories, with an estimated travel time of 18 days.
According to Raillynews, stating that rail container transportation is the most suitable transportation for the development of commercial relations between Ukraine and China, UZ Deputy Chairman Aleksander Kamishin said, “In mid-September, we bought the 50th container train with imported cargo from China. Today we are sending the first container train with Ukraine cargo to China. We plan to make such trains regular.”
On the other hand, Minister of Infrastructure Aleksander Kubrakov noted that Ukraine has a great export potential and the new team of the ministry is actively working on development and said, “It is important for us to integrate into the global system of multimodal transport, which is rapidly expanding and determines modern logistics. For example, the share of container traffic in the EU is about 45%. In Ukraine we are only talking about 2.5%.”
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Emphasizing that Ukraine cannot fully utilize the geographical location factor due to the outdated railway and port infrastructure, the Minister said, “At the same time, Ukraine cannot ignore the demand and potential of multimodal transport, especially with Asian countries, so the renewal and development of the infrastructure for the maritime-rail format will be necessary in the coming years. It will be one of the main businesses of Büyük İnşaat.”
In October 2020, the first container train arrived at Kiev-Liski station via China – Kazakhstan – Russia – Belarus – Ukraine.
High-quality import products welcomed in Chinese market
Partners of Ukrainian railways Ukrzaliznytsia, the Xi’an Free Trade Port Construction and Operation Company, the East Line LLC and his sister company WISTARSC Supply Chain in the City Wuhan also made a contribution to the opereation of this eastbound freight train to China.
“The location determines that Ukraine can play an important role for China-Europe rail transportation, especially in the situation of congestion on the traditional route via Brest-Terespol. We believe that Ukraine can serve as a hub. ” the spokeman of East Line LLC added, “High-quality agricultural products and all kinds of food, wine are widely fovored by the Chinese market. We will continue to help both Chinese and Ukrainian customers to promote more Ukrainian products with high added value such as wine, poultry meat, dairy products etc. “