Maersk India’s 13 new weekly dedicated rail services launched in 2021 witnessed 43 percent growth in the movement of containerised export cargo on rail and 23 percent growth on rail for import and export combined.

“Unlocking the potential of rail solutions to move cargo during the toughest times of the pandemic has been hugely satisfying,” says Akshyat Bhatia, Head of Landside Transportation, Maersk South Asia. “To be able to play a role in developing tailor-made solutions for customers which ultimately helped the traders in the country connect to the global market was even more gratifying.”

Using rail to move cargo had multiple benefits for Maersk’s customers:

* Up to 30 percent quicker transit times compared to road transport

* Solid, unhindered connectivity between ports and manufacturing hubs

* Scheduled movement for better predictability; and

* around 14.5 MT lower carbon footprint (equivalent to car driven for 60,000 kms)

Maersk’s 13 weekly dedicated rail services were based on the ‘assured transit’ concept on the Dedicated Freight Corridors (DFC). “These rail services were designed in such a way that different industrial verticals were to be connected to the ports. Examples of these were the Automotive Express running between the Northern Capital Region’s (NCR) automotive manufacturing hub and the port of APM Terminals Pipavav, Gujarat or the Retail Express that ran on DFC to give assured transit time to lifestyle and apparels sector.”

Vikash Agarwal, managing director, Maersk South Asia, says: “Being committed to connecting and simplifying our customers’ supply chains meant we had to go beyond solutions that are on the menu card. We wanted to create exciting offerings that would delight our customers, especially in the tough pandemic situation that we have been operating in. Having flagged off 13 new services successfully over the year, Maersk is truly proud to have designed and implemented what customers needed.”

Maersk will work on offering better rail solutions in 2022. “Rail has always been considered as a second alternative to road transport despite being safer and faster,” says Jyoti Mitter, Rail Product Manager, Maersk South Asia. “Last year, we created 273 new corridors with rail as the backbone and connected our customers on this highly efficient mode of logistics all the way to their hubs of convenience. Having carried more than 50,000 containers (twenty feet equivalent units TEUs) over and above the previous year and having covered 150,000 km, we are confident of building on this solution in the coming years too.”

Source : ITLN