On 20 November 2021, the first high-speed container train loaded exclusively the cargo of AsstrA customers departed the station of Changsha, China, en route to the station of Vorsino in the Kaluga Region of Russia. The train of fifty 40-foot containers carried cargo of many types, including household appliances, clothing, and spare car parts. Due to the procedures related to transshipment to Russian platforms at the country’s border, the containers were shipped onward in batches to the Vorsino station. Most of the goods arrived on 10 December and the remainder over the next six days. AsstrA experts ensured the proper reception of the goods in Vorsino as well as their release and last mile delivery to their final recipients.
"The length of the Changsha — Vorsino route is 10,126 km. We have been using it for some time already. Before organizing this entire train of our customers’ cargo, our major milestone for this route was organizing our first full container load of consolidated goods for AsstrA customers on a high-speed container train on 25 August 2021. The transit time was 18 days. Consolidation was supervised by our experts from AsstrA Shanghai at our logistic operator partner’s warehouse in the city of Changsha. Upon completing customs procedures, the container was transported to a warehouse in the Moscow Region for deconsolidation. From there, the goods were shipped on to the final recipients,” shares Natalia Shmanevskaya, AsstrA Shanghai Branch Manager.
The high-speed container trains run along the Trans-Siberian Railway with a single stop at the Zabaikalsk-Manchuria border crossing. Taking this route ensures a transit time of 20-25 days from the train's departure to the time of arrival at its destination.
Depending on their unique requirements, AsstrA customers choosing this service can take advantage of fast shipment times, favorable rates, and customs clearance handled by AsstrA’s China-based team. Also, the shipments can be made door-to-door.
"In the global economy, there is a trend towards cargo containerization. It is a fast and reliable way to deliver goods. Such services are attractive given the current coronavirus restrictions at border crossings. We have noticed increasing interest in high-speed rail transportation from customers in the high-tech, fashion, and beauty sectors, among others. Shipment speed and the ability to plan the delivery schedule in advance are important for them," says Ekaterina Voronova, China-CIS Rail Freight Transportation Division Head. "Due to the popularity of the new service, we are considering a way to send trains to Vorsino from Xi'an and Taiyuan. We are also launching plans to offer high-speed container train shipments from the north of China to Nizhnekamsk. In the future we plan to establish regular shipments to Kaliningrad."
AsstrA predicts a further increase in demand for high-speed container train transport. The company plans to transport cargo to Moscow, Minsk, Kiev, and EU destinations on a permanent basis, with one train to each of the cities served every month. Negotiations with potential partners are already in progress.
Author: Anastasiya Sidelnikova.