Port of Ghent

Belgium to Sweden service reflects ‘modal shift’

Port of Ghent

A new freight service linking Belgium and Sweden reflects the growing demand for a modal shift towards rail, says its provider, B Logistics. The Sweden Xpress will also fit in ‘beautifully’ with the Port of Ghent’s multimodal commitments.

In response to what B Logistics calls a ‘specific demand from shippers’, the connection will be supported further by a regular feeder train to move shipments from Ghent to Antwerp – its departure point – for connection to the Sweden Xpress.

Shunting operations

Average punctuality of the Xpress services is more than 95 per cent, which is seen as unrivalled in the marketplace. By limiting the number of shunting operations during the journey, and carrying out almost the entire trip with the same locomotive, B Logistics say this will enhance its reliability. Trains are on a fixed timetable and products are tracked by a dedicated team giving the customer shipment updates in real time.

Geert Pauwels, CEO of B Logistics, said: “By offering these premium rail products, with a differentiated service and excellent performance, we are continuing our sustainable growth and we will achieve the modal shift to rail. Doing so, of course we focus in the first place on our customers and their needs. Moreover, as rail operator, we want to make a difference when it comes to a better environment and an improved mobility.”

Multimodal port

Daan Schalck, CEO of Ghent Port Company, said: “This connection fits in beautifully with the Ghent Port Company’s strategy with as multimodal port. We aim for sustainable transport between the port and the hinterland. Today rail transport stands for 10 per cent of the modal split. In the future we want to increase this up to 15 per cent. Year after year, Sweden has been one of the major trading partners of Ghent port – this train connection will continue to stimulate this position.”

The Sweden Xpress connects Belgium (with Antwerp-North as the hub – departures on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday) three times a week with Sweden (with Malmö as the hub – departures on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday). At the Swedish end, partner Green Cargo handles the last mile. Connections onto Denmark and Norway will soon follow.

Author: Simon Weedy

Simon is a journalist for RailFreight.com - a dedicated online platform for all the news about the rail freight sector

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