Ukrainian Railway returns postal wagons on tracks

2022/04/05 at 12:33 PM

After the 21-year-long break, the postal wagons have again appeared on tracks in Ukraine. This is a result of cooperation between Ukrposhta, the national postal operator, and Ukrzaliznytsia, the state-owned railway undertaking. Both companies have jointly relaunched rail shipments of parcels. The new service is also used for transporting humanitarian aid.

The first delivery of mail by rail took place last week. On Friday, 1 April, the postal wagon was coupled to the Lviv-Kyiv passenger train. It arrived in the capital of Ukraine the next day. Since the distribution centre of Ukrposhta is located close to the railway station, the parcels were quickly transhipped to trucks for further delivery to the recipients. Ukrposhta and Ukrainian Railway (Ukrzaliznytsia) are planning to launch the postal wagons to other cities of the country, primarily to Kharkiv.

Loading a postal wagon with parcels in Kyiv, source: Ukrainian Railway (Ukrzaliznytsia, UZ)

Reasons for cooperation

Starting from 24 February, Ukraine has been suffering from Russian aggression. One of its consequences is the broken supply chains and parcel logistics. “Since the beginning of the war, the number of tasks that Ukrposhta solves has increased. If previously our task was to deliver shipments, now we have added the transportation of humanitarian goods, assistance with the relocation of enterprises and delivery of food kits to the frontline cities. In addition, traffic on the roads has become difficult due to numerous checkpoints and sometimes traffic jams,” Ihor Smilianskyi, CEO of Ukrposhta, explained the decision of his company to participate in the joint project with the Ukrzaliznytsia.

At the same time, the national railway undertaking added one more reason for relaunching postal wagons. “The development of rail postal services is in line with the EU policy, which has set itself the ambitious goal of doubling the share of railways in multimodal transport by 2030 in order to reduce road congestion and CO2 emissions,” the Ukrainian Railway stated.

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