Russian metallurgical giant delivers steel via Baku-Tbilisi-Kars railway
Magnitogorsk Iron and Steel Works (MMK), one of the world’s largest steel producers and a leading Russian metals company, has established a new freight route for delivering its production. The trial batch of hot rolled coils was carried from Magnitogorsk, Russia, to Iskenderun, Turkey via the Baku-Tbilisi-Kars railway.
Four containers with a total weight of 120 tonnes were delivered to MMK’s subsidiary in Turkey. Freight cars with metal products overcame a distance of 5,000 kilometre in seventeen days. Previously, MMK’s products were transported exclusively via Novorossiysk seaport, by a route exceeding 6,000 kilometre. The delivery time was almost twice as long: thirty days.
The trial batch was carried out together with ADY Express, an Azerbaijani railway operator, at the beginning of August. Currently, MMK is considering to deliver up to 250,000 tonnes of metal per year per rail. This is approximately a third of MMK’s production of hot rolled coil.
“The diversification of logistics flows will allow the company to reduce risks associated with temporary restrictions and bad weather in the Novorossiysk port area. Reducing the number of transshipments will also help avoid mechanical damage to commercial products and ensure the preservation of quality in metal characteristics,” the steel company reported.
The Baku-Tbilisi-Kars railway was launched in October, 2017. The first train operated on the line departed in November, 2017. Currently, the capacity of the railway line is more than 6 million tonne of cargo and 1 million passengers. This figure is expected to increase in next 20 years to 17 million tonnes of cargo and 3 million passengers.