Latvian Railways could help transport Ukraine's grain

State JSC “Latvian Railways” (LDz) could be involved in the transport of Ukrainian grain by rail in the autumn of this year, said Board Chairman Rinalds Pļavnieks in an interview with Latvian Radio on August 15.

Pļavnieks, who took office as chairman of the board of directors of LDz in July this year, said that at the beginning of the summer, he had been skeptical about the possible transportation of Ukrainian grain to ports through the Latvian railway infrastructure. “I considered it impossible to do this in industrial terms for the railway,” said Pļavnieks, explaining that two transshipments should be carried out in that case.

However, these services are carried out in other countries. “These are a few thousand tonnes a month, but logistics and handling opportunities have developed,” said Pļavnieks, noting that the possibility of transporting Ukrainian grain in Latvia has now emerged.

LDz has had a meeting with Ukraine's ambassador to Latvia, and the company's employees have returned Sunday from a visit to Ukraine. “We see that around 500 thousand to a million tons a year could be transported in this transit corridor,” said Pļavnieks.

He confirmed that LDz could start transporting Ukrainian grain in the fall of this year.

Transport Minister Jānis Vitenbergs (National Alliance) had previously expressed concern that the Latvian railway infrastructure was not ready for the Ukrainian-Latvian route through Poland. “We do not have the same gauge of the railway with Poland so that the grain could be transported from Ukraine through Poland,” the Transport Minister said in July.

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