Rail freight from Russia to Latvia could shrink as much as 85%

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The volume of rail freight transport from Russia to Latvia could shrink as much as 85% due to EU sanctions on Russia, Latvia's Transport Minister Tālis Linkaits told Latvian Radio yesterday.

Rail freight from Russia to Latvia could shrink as much as 85%
Photo: Kārlis Dambrāns / Flickr / CC BY 2.0

According to Latvia’s national public broadcaster, the full impact of the sanctions against Russia remains to be seen. There was actually a minor rise in the amount of rail freight cargo that arrived in Latvia via Russia last month.

“There is some inertia that existing shipments are still being shipped to suppliers. Shippers are trying to get these loads out of Russia and Belarus and deliver them to the final customers as soon as possible,” Linkaits is quoted as saying.

The Minister reportedly estimated that any influence the sanctions have on Latvia’s rail freight will be visible around a month from now. This is true when it comes to coal, general cargo, and import cargo.

In a worst case scenario, Linkaits said that an “iron curtain on the border between Latvia and Russia” could materialise, resulting in rail freight from Russia to Latvia shrinking by 82-85%.

The country’s port could be impacted too, with a 66% decline possible at Ventspil, 45% at Riga and 12% percent at Liepājas.


Photo: Kārlis Dambrāns / Flickr / CC BY 2.0

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