New on rail: rapeseed in flexi-tanks from Siberia to China

RCG-Russia and FESCO

Rail Cargo Group and FESCO Transport Group have jointly organised the first multimodal transport of rapeseed oil from Krasnoyarsk, the third largest city in Siberia, to the Chinese port of Nantong. The product was transported in containers equipped with flexi-tanks, a new way of transporting liquids on the New Silk Road.

The first batch of goods were sent in March. The shipment contained of 216 tonnes of cargo, moved from Krasnoyarsk, located on the Trans-Siberian Railway, to the port of Nantong, Jiangsu province in China. The rapeseed oil reached its destination on 17 March, after 35 days in transit.

The ten containers and the rapeseed oil loaded in flexi-tanks were first transported by rail from the terminal in Krasnoyarsk to the Port of Vladivostok on the Pacific coast of Russia. The regular sea line FESCO China Express then took the containers to the Port of Shanghai, where they were transported by barge on the river to the Port of Nantong. Both business partners aim to create further stable and reliable transport services of this kind.

Previous journeys

The use of flexi-tanks is relatively new on the New Silk Road. In late September of 2019, a multimodal rail-sea service departed from Russia to China. The railway leg stretched from Barnaul to the port of Nakhodka in the Russian Far East. It included flexi-tanks filled with linseed oil. In the Russian port they were transshipped to vessels for delivery to the Chinese ports of Shanghai and Tianjin.

The flexi-tanks are single-use bags for transporting liquid goods by rail. The flexi-tanks have a capacity for 10,000 – 24,000 litres or 20 – 25 tonnes of liquid freight. They are placed in 20-foot containers. Such mode of transportation is more reliable and convenient compared to tank wagons and barrels.

For all industries

“Comprehensive logistics packages with end-to-end logistics solutions are becoming increasingly important on the Chinese market. After all, the Chinese market is one of the most up-and-coming when it comes to the export of Russian goods, especially food. This is why the Rail Cargo Group in Russia also relies on international rail, container and truck transport to Russia, Turkey and even to China. And for every industry”, Rail Cargo Group commented.

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Author: Majorie van Leijen

Majorie van Leijen is the editor-in-chief of, the online magazine for rail freight professionals.

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