On 9 May 2012, DB Schenker hosted a Media Workshop on Transport and Logistics at DB Headquarters in Berlin.
The meeting was promoted under the topic: “DB Schenker: A real Global Player – 10 years of integrated transport and logistics performances”. Dr Karl-Friedrich Rausch, Member of the Board of DB Mobility Logistics AG, gave an introduction and an overview of the strategies of DB Schenker Rail and DB Schenker Logistics. He stressed that the former railway system in Germany had been further developed through integration in an internationally acting logistics company. Today DB Schenker consists of a worldwide acting transport and logistics network with a strong railway network.
One of the worldwide activities of DB Schenker is the so-called “Chinazug (Chinatrain)”. Since September 2011 DB Schenker Rail has been transporting car parts for BMW from Leipzig to Shenyang in China. The trains take 23 days to cover this route of approximately 11,000 km. The route goes through Poland, Belarus and Russia to China. The containers have to be transhipped two times because of the different track gauges in these countries. At the Polish/Belarusian border a gauge conversion from standard to broad gauge has to be made. At the border from Russia to China a conversion back to standard gauge is needed. Moreover a change of the locomotive and the locomotive driver is necessary at each border station.
For the return journey from China to Germany a customer from the electronic industry contracts DB Schenker to transport its products from Chongqing to Germany. Both carriages by DB Schenker start and end in the China’s hinterland. In general, exports from here to Europe are operated by sea or air transport. The advantage of carriage by rail is the shorter duration of transport time which is half of what is needed for ship transport.
DB and RZD work closely together to operate and coordinate carriages and participating railways along the way. Through this cooperation, different technical and organisational conditions such as different power systems, operational rules and customs processes can be overcome easier.
Dr Alexander Hedderich, Chairman of the Board of DB Schenker Rail, presented some examples of DB Schenker Rail’s new strategy. Their new business model “Netzwerkbahn” is supposed to replace the old wagon load system. The idea behind it is rather old and refers to a basic principle the American Railroads established during 1998 and 2002. Green Cargo (Sweden) and SNCF (France) have already followed this example likewise.
As traditionally the wagon load transport system is very complex and expensive because of a low level of standardisation, the idea is to combine both wagon and block train systems. The aim is to offer customers more reliable and projectable carriage and be able to produce more efficiently at the same time.
The European Transport Management (EUROM) tries to improve cross-border transport processes by introducing cross-border production control. Quality shall be increased through a European-wide standardisation of production processes. The advantages for the customers are higher punctuality and speed as well as greater transparency in terms of better transport control. The roll-out started at the end of 2011 and shall be completed in 2013.