Russian Railways starts Mongolian-Far East service
Russian Railways' first freight train from Ulan Bator station departed for Russia's Vostochny port on Thursday with 30 cars of coal from Mongolia's Tavan-Tolgoi mine for delivery to countries of the Asia-Pacific region.
Until now, all freight routes from Mongolia via Russia went only to the West.
'This is the result of a colossal amount of work carried out jointly by Russia and Mongolia. We and our Mongolian colleagues have developed the whole transport chain ' from creating a modern, powerful locomotive and rebuilding infrastructure to setting competitive tariffs' said Russian Railways President Vladimir Yakunin in a speech. 'The launch of rail freight services from Mongolia to Far East ports is a clear demonstration of the potential for diversifying sales of Mongolian products on world markets.'
Yakunin said the new route will allow coal to be delivered from Mongolian mines to Japan and South Korea via Russia's Far East ports, and also in the future via the developing port of Rajin.
During their official visits to Mongolia in 2009, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev and Prime Minister Vladimir Putin signed a range of intergovernmental accords, which were furthered by bilateral agreements to develop the Mongolian railway sector. In May 2009, Russian Railways and the Mongolian government set up the joint venture “Infrastructure Development,” to provide an investment platform to develop the Mongolian rail system. Since December 2009, Russian Railways has acted as beneficial owner of the Russian share of the Russian-Mongolian joint stock company Ulan Bator Railway.