THE RAILWAY "STRETCHES" THE INTERMODAL TRAINS
Delivery and pick up "door to door"
In the context of the Covid-19 epidemic, according to the directive of the Prime Minister, from the beginning of the year until now, the entire railway network has twice sharply reduced the frequency of north-south passenger trains and actively changed direction to run the freight train with good service and reasonable cost. Leaders of VNR and rail transport service units find ways to remove the bottlenecks in the mechanism to improve the volume of goods between Hanoi - Dong Dang - Bang Tuong - Nanning to other provinces in China, even go to third countries and proceed to bring exports to Russia, Europe, ...
The focus on developing freight transport is not only a temporary solution during the Covid-19 epidemic season but also a long-term orientation of the railway industry. For many years now, VNR has signed a cooperation agreement with Vietnam Chemical Group to carry out rail transportation, reaching about 1.6 million tons in 2020. From input materials such as apatite to output products such as fertilizers and chemicals, this corporation is transported by rail.
The international intermodal refrigerated container ship transporting dragon fruits running from Dong Dang station to Bang Tuong station (China) operated since February has been running stably every week, opening the direction of official export of fruits and agricultural products frozen by rail to China and Central Asian countries, Europe.
Haraco Deputy General Director Phung Thi Ly Ha said that, in order to serve the transportation of essential goods, from the beginning of April, the company has operated a pair of freight trains bearing the number HL1/HL2 for a 34-hour journey from Hanoi to Ho Chi Minh City and reverse, follow the journey of SE5/SE6 passenger trains and stop to receive and return goods at stations in Hanoi, Phu Ly, Vinh, Quang Ngai, Dieu Tri, Nha Trang, Bien Hoa, Saigon,... The freight train journey follows passenger ships, so the time is fast, the loading and unloading, delivery and management have a strict process, the goods sent are guaranteed in the best way.
Two freighters specializing in express delivery each day earn about 700 million VND in revenue. Customers who have shipping needs, just need a few minutes of online operation to successfully complete the order. With this service, the railway staff will go to the customer's address to receive the goods, transport them to the destination by train and be delivered to the recipient's address after only a few hours to the station caleed “door to door” delivery. Customers can also bring their own goods to the station to send and to the station to receive the goods.
Chairman of the Board of Members of the Vietnam Railways Corporation (VNR) Vu Anh Minh assessed that, in fact, the "door to door" freight service has been implemented and operated by the railway industry since mid-August-2019. Due to the impact of the Covid-19 epidemic, the north-south railway route runs very little passenger trains, so air freight trains have to stop for as long as before, with conditions to shorten train running time, transport and return goods quickly.
Currently, due to few train passengers, Hanoi Railway Transport Joint Stock Company (Haraco) has changed direction, focusing on the field of freight transport. The company has put into operation a number of new products, especially maintaining daily running of 40-hour journey fast container ships such as north-south passenger trains; promote the exploitation of retail goods, goods of high value, which need to be well preserved, with fast transit time by the journey of Unified passenger ships...
Cargo trains have many separate trips, not traveling with passenger trains, every day there are two regular freight trains from Giap Bat (Hanoi) to Song Than and reverse, a container ship from Yen Vien station (Hanoi) to Song Than station (Binh Duong); a ship specializing in transportation in the form of express delivery Hanoi - Saigon.
According to a report by VNR, the railway system's warehouses and yards currently have more than 38,500 m2 of general warehouses invested many years ago, most of which have been degraded and do not meet the standards for storage and preservation fresh goods, high value goods. The Hanoi area has invested in a standard cargo yard at Yen Vien station, but the area is still small, while the central region does not have a standard cargo yard; In the southern region, there is a cargo yard at Trang Bom station (Dong Nai) but it is also temporary.
VNR Chairman Vu Anh Minh said that due to the lack of warehouses and support vehicles, the total cost of rail transport was very high. For example, the cost of transportation from the customer's warehouse to Song Than station and from Giap Bat station to the customer's warehouse, loading and unloading, and short-distance transportation by car is already equal to the cost of rail freight from Song Than station to the destination. Giap Bat station is nearly 1,700 km long. This shows that two-way costs account for 50% of total transportation costs. This is the biggest limitation that makes VNR's freight service unable to "take off", so it is necessary to invest in warehouse infrastructure to create favorable conditions for transport enterprises to provide first-class connection services. Finally, lower logistics costs.
Transport innovation, "stretching" intermodal
In the early days of September at Hoang Dieu port (Hai Phong), while other port areas were quiet due to the impact of the Covid-19 epidemic, the railway cargo area in the port was quite bustling. Two large cranes are busy loading and unloading sulfur products on the wagons; each group of workers crowdedly leveled goods, covered with tarpaulin, reinforced, sealed wagons, etc. for long-distance trains.
Chairman of the Board of Directors and Director of Hai Phong Railway Transport Services Joint Stock Company Duong Van Hung said that sulfur products are transported by rail to China, although affected by the epidemic, the volume transported Sulfur from the beginning of 2020 has still grown by about 15% over the same period. Iron ore exports by rail from Hai Phong to China also reached 60,000 tons.
Sulfur, iron ore or zinc products from abroad go directly to Hai Phong Port, then go by rail to Lao Cai, transported to China will meet the requirements: cheap price, good transport quality, fast shipping time, no loss of goods, no impurities.
To develop freight transport, VNR has recently built about 300 new container wagons; testing and officially putting into operation the online freight management system in order to improve service quality and make it more convenient for customers. In the face of the complicated development of the epidemic, Haraco halted the large investment in passenger cars and turned to build 100 new mixed wagons to carry a variety of goods, including containers; plan to invest in some equipment at the beginning and end points to reduce logistics costs.
In the next 5 years, the railway industry will focus on researching passenger transport options on medium and short routes to replace long-distance transport and reduce low-efficiency trains. At the same time, depending on the market demand to open more new routes in the direction of focusing on towns and townships and cooperate to attract the flow of foreign tourists.
VNR Chairman Vu Anh Minh assessed that, not only has rail intermodal transport from Hai Phong to China grown, but in general, freight transport of the whole industry has remained stable, although some goods and flows of goods decrease in production due to the impact of the Covid-19 epidemic. From the beginning of 2020 until now, the volume of rail freight transport is still similar to the same period, revenue growth is about 5%.
According to Mr. Minh, this is the effectiveness of policies and solutions to restructure transport, innovate and promote freight transport since 2019. At that time, determine the market space and segment of transportation. Passengers at the port decreased due to the weakness in competition with other modes of transport, on the other hand, it is necessary to promote the advantages of rail transport in transporting large volumes, going far and safely, VNR has focused on on freight transport, identifying this as the focus.
At the same time, promoting international ships to China and from China to Central Asia and Europe; especially normal container ships and refrigerated container ships, self-generating to transport food and fresh fruit. If the Hai Phong - Hanoi - Lao Cai - China intermodal rail transport route remains stable, the Hanoi - Dong Dang - China intermodal transport route is a route with a remarkable new diversified transportation products: container ships to China, ships to Poland, Germany,...
Evaluating VNR's international rail transport service, Director of MTL Vietnam Kim Dea Sun said: "Since 2018, the company has used VNR's rail freight service to Poland because the cost is cheaper than by air and shorten the transit time compared to sea. After 3 years of using the service, we found the service quality to be very good. VNR has committed to shipping time and strictly adheres to commitments, very good support for us in business, has a competitive advantage for customers.
A representative of the railway transport and trading joint stock company (Ratraco) said that the railway industry has carried out the transportation of goods quite effectively to countries such as Mongolia, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Russia, Tajikistan, and Poland. Lan, England, Germany, etc. Products include electronics, textiles, footwear, cosmetics, frozen foods, and fruits. In general, the total volume of import and export goods in 2019 through 2 railway border gates at Dong Dang and Lao Cai stations reached 828 thousand tons, equaling 116% over the same period. In the first seven months of this year, despite a decrease in domestic transport demand, imports and exports through these two railway border gates still reached more than 472 thousand tons, equaling about 110% over the same period.
Sharing about the potential for international intermodal freight development, Mr. Vu Anh Minh said: “With an advanced container transport mode, the travel time by rail is only 18-20 days, but by sea it will take about 40-45 days. This is a great competitive advantage of rail transport, especially for items that need good storage conditions and fast delivery time.
Railway enterprises have linked, cooperated with transport and freight forwarding businesses in other countries to provide customers with full logistics services, including two-way transportation, Coast Guard declaration , transshipment through border stations, transportation supervision, receipt - delivery to the warehouse, etc. is very convenient. On the other hand, VNR also accepts multimodal transportation such as railway - railway, railway - road, railway - sea to meet the diverse needs of customers.
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