Budapest, January 22, 2018. – Rail Cargo Logistics - Hungaria Kft. solemnly opened its new office at station Budapest-Ferencváros. Tasks of the scheduling centre are the seamless organisation of the so-called Balkán-Express block trains and the control of the wagons running in this traffic. The office in Ferencváros is at the clients' disposal providing additional logistic services together with the commercial train planning in Kiskunhalas.
The first experiences of the newly introduced solution for the building of trains to the Balkans were reviewed at the joint event of Rail Cargo Hungaria Zrt. and Rail Cargo Logistics - Austria GmbH.
As from January 1st 2018 Rail Cargo Hungaria Zrt. organises the consignments from all over Europe to the Balkans into block trains only at the station Ferencváros in Budapest, instead of the former gathering in points Villach (Austria), Sopron (Hungary), Štúrovo (Slovakia), and Belgrade (Serbia). The concerted organising enables the composition of direct trains towards Bulgaria, Turkey, Serbia, Macedonia, and Greece. The first Balkan train set off for Turkey on January 3rd 2018, followed by the first Greek express with a total running time of 3 days on the whole section instead of the former 5-7 days. Thanks to the rapid train building a daily 2 trains depart to Serbia, 1 train to Greece and Macedonia; to Bulgaria, respectively via Bulgaria to Turkey trains are launched every second day.
This new solution decreases the waiting time of consignments and their forwarding costs. In the old hubs the waiting time was between 46 and 95 hours, while the trains had to pass at least two hubs on the way to their destination. This caused higher costs and wagon utilisation problems. The new process of train composition the staying time can be reduced under the average of 48 hours and the wagons are able to reach their destination a few days earlier. The company expects from the accelerated transport the increase of the traffic.
Dr. Kovács Imre, chairman of the board of directors of Rail Cargo Hungaria, CEO emphasised the fact that the company continuously increases the competitiveness of its services by building on the capabilities and the innovative group dynamics of Rail Cargo Group's subordinates. The travel time of the Balkan-Express trains almost reaches the speed of the road trucks while reducing traffic congestions on highways and harmful emissions by one thousand tons a year. Rail Cargo Hungaria and Rail Cargo Logistics shall continue their effort to organise intermodal trains with similar advantages – Dr. Kovács Imre concluded.
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MMV Magyar Magánvasút and Rail Cargo Hungaria concluded an agreement on operational cooperation
Budapest, December 17, 2017 – The reconstruction and complete closure of the railway section between Kelenföld and Érd felső starting in February 2018 for more than a year will have a significant impact on the rail freight traffic on the railway line Budapest–Pécs and its connecting lines. The transportation demands of several strategically important companies and factories have to be satisfied in the region, therefore the railway undertakings need to approach the track closure with preparedness. MÁV has elaborated the appropriate alternative detours and solutions necessary for ensuring the track capacities needed for rail freight transport. The smooth supply of raw materials and transport of end products is also guaranteed by today's agreement of operational cooperation between Magyar Magánvasút Zrt. and Rail Cargo Hungaria Zrt.
The agreement was signed by dr. Katona László, executive director of Magyar Magánvasút Zrt. (MMV) and dr. Kovács Imre, chairman of the board of directors, CEO of Rail Cargo Hungaria Zrt. (RCH). Veszprémi László, deputy executive director for operations of MÁV Zrt. as well as representatives of the strategically important companies were present at the event organised on behalf of the signing of this agreement.
Several reconstruction projects are running or will be launched in order to modernise and sustain the appropriate state of the railway network on a long-term basis. One of those is the line number 40a, between Budapest and Pusztaszabolcs, of which the section Kelenföld and Érd felső will undergo reconstruction, which shall take 13 months according to plan. Due to the special circumstances and layout of the track the reconstruction is only possible with special equipment and complete closure. The closure has not only an impact on the passengers but also on the key companies south of Budapest in regard of the economy and energy supply of Hungary. Factories around Százhalombatta, Ercsi, Szabadegyháza, Dunaújváros, Dunaföldvár and Paks are supplied by 40-50 freight trains a day, counting with possible growth of demands.
Freight forwarders shall count with the increase of running time, lower train parameters (e.g. lower axle-load), and with more costs and resources than usual. RCH and MMV decided to conclude an agreement on operational cooperation for the optimisation of infrastructure capacities.
Dávid Ilona, chairwoman of HUNGRAIL told upon the signing of the agreement that the employees of MÁV, RCH and MMV worked together in the past months finding the appropriate alternative for freight transport on the available routes during the track closure. The domestic railway undertakings, the Ministry of National Development and the National Infrastructure Development Plc. (NIF Zrt.) did their best to serve the strategic companies and are monitoring the processes on a daily basis to ensure smooth handling. With the complete rebuilding of the tracks the allowed axle load shall increase, the speed-limitations will be eliminated, improving the competitiveness of rail freight transport.
With their cooperation RCH and MMV seek to reduce the negative consequences of the limitations of the access to tracks during the supply of the above mentioned companies by increasing the effectivity of their capacities. The two competitors shall cooperate on the operational level in the field of traction, wagon inspection, freight wagon utilisation, shunting and other services.
Dr. Katona László, executive director of MMV Zrt. stressed the importance of modern, developed railway track for all railway undertakings to use. However the high-quality service of clients is also important during the time of reconstructions. The agreement was concluded just for this reason: two key market players seek to coordinate and utilise their resources and capacities for the sake of satisfactory service of their clients.
Dr. Kovács Imre, chairman of the board of directors of RCH Zrt. expressed his appreciation for the development of the Hungarian infrastructure, for it improves the level, security and efficiency of freight transportation. The disturbance of traffic is unpleasant, but is part of the reconstruction process. Rail Cargo Hungaria does its best to reduce the disadvantages caused by the restrictions and seeks to provide high-quality services to its clients; especially for international traffic, as Hungary is a hub in Europe's east-west and north-south railroad traffics. 80% of Rail Cargo Hungaria's transports are international.
With the below measures, coordinated technologies of infrastructure-operators and railway services the freight train traffic can be upheld. MÁV shall cooperate with the railway undertakings concerned in order to harmonise technologies and shall submit suggestions. Coordination with rail freight forwarders and shipping companies is being carried out every month starting from September 2017.
To ensure the seamless freight traffic MÁV established a separate control board coordinating the traffic of freight trains according to the information received from contact persons of railway undertakings and enterprises with large transport demands. After the beginning of the track closure in February an operational staff will organise the operation of the infrastructure network involving railway undertakings as well.
MÁV and Vpe-Rail Capacity Allocation Office have examined the passage capacities, the size of freight train traffic and the availability of resources for the expected traffic increase of the railway lines Budapest–Székesfehérvár, Pusztaszabolcs–Székesfehérvár and Székesfehérvár–Sárbogárd. MÁV has allocated several train launching tracks to avoid possible traffic disruptions.
There are maintenance works on the lines Székesfehérvár–Pusztaszabolcs and Székesfehérvár–Sárbogárd with the intention to cancel temporary speed limits, and the number of traffic personnel has also been increased. Automatized traffic flow is going to be introduced between Börgönd and Zichyújfalu to increase passage capacities of the section between these stations. On the detour section Komárom–Székesfehérvár MÁV provides continuous traffic operation.
Freight trains coming from and leaving for railway lines east of the Danube (Szob, Hidasnémeti, Záhony, Lőkösháza, Ferencváros) can run on the route Kelenföld–Székesfehérvár–Pusztaszabolcs, with diesel traction on the section Székesfehérvár– Pusztaszabolcs. On demand MÁV shall provide continuous traffic operation on the line Kiskunhalas–Baja–Dombóvár as well.
Freight trains running via station Gyékényes can use the line Gyékényes–Kaposvár–Rétszilas–Dunaújváros, with diesel traction on the section Rétszilas–Dunaújváros. Trains via Hegyeshalom and Komárom stations the use of the route Hegyeshalom–Komárom–Székesfehérvár–Pusztaszabolcs is recommended, with diesel traction between Komárom–Székesfehérvár and Székesfehérvár–Pusztaszabolcs.
Dunaújváros, November 23, 2017. – Dr. Imre Kovács, chairman of the board of Rail Cargo Hungaria Zrt. CEO, Beatrix Schőn, principal of the Grammar School SZC Bánki Donát of Dunaújváros and Erika Futóné Szaucsuk, president of the Bánki Donát Foundation signed an agreement of cooperation about the realisation of the "Program for the preparation of the supply of new locomotive driver recruits for Rail Cargo Hungaria Zrt."
Rail Cargo Hungaria Zrt. as the market leader and largest employer of rail freight transport in Hungary feels responsible for the supply of experts. The lack of labour has become a hindrance of the company's development. To ensure successful operation in the future Rail Cargo Hungaria invests into the training of new recruits in various ways: it offers a credit-system masters education at the University of Debrecen, supports courses at the University of Dunaújváros, and within its own trainee program young graduates have the opportunity to gain direct experience in rail freight forwarding. The goal of the signed program in the secondary school of Dunaújváros is to support the studies of those pupils learning German, who wish to become locomotive drivers. The amount of the grant in the academic year 2017/2018 is HUF 2.750.000 total. The scholarship, which is HUF 15.000 up to HUF 45.000 depending on learning outcome, is granted to ten pupils of the 9th grade of traffic operators learning German language.
Rail Cargo Hungaria does not only offer grants but also career opportunities to those young students, who would like to become locomotive drivers. The company operates more than 135 000 trains and forwards almost 32 Million tons of freight annually, out of which 10 Million tons are being forwarded by its own fleet of 25 locomotives: a real challenge indeed.
Moreover Rail Cargo Hungaria provides 2 extra lessons of German for the pupils per week, finances professional summer camps in Austria and Hungary, and invites the pupils to its family sports day, railwaymen's day and other leisure events.
Upon the signature of the cooperation agreement Dr. Imre Kovács said, that it is among the long-term ideas of Rail Cargo Hungaria to support the selected pupils until the completion of the technician's exam. Those, who finish their studies successfully, shall get an opportunity to take part in the company's locomotive driver's training and become its employee. The company offers the employment of the scholars on the most modern traction equipment within the ÖBB Holding in Hungary and throughout Europe.
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November 16, 2017. - Dr. Imre Kovács, CEO and chairman of the board of directors of Rail Cargo Hungaria awarded students with scholarships for their excellent study results together with Elisabeth Ellison-Kramer, Ambassador of Austria in Budapest and Margot Wieser, principal of the Austrian School of Budapest. Our company supports the pupils of the school with HUF 1 Million annually.
Aim of the „Rail Cargo Hungaria Study Scholarship Program" founded in 2011 is to acknowledge and support students with extraordinary results, to facilitate talent management in the Austrian School of Budapest and to strengthen the traditional cooperation between the Austrian School of Budapest and Rail Cargo Hungaria. Together with this year's scholarships the market-leading rail freight transport company granted financial support more than fifty times to talented pupils and their families in order to continue their study in this school.
Ambassador Elisabeth Ellison-Kramer praised the traditional relationship between the Hungarian subsidy of Rail Cargo Group and the school and congratulated the awarded students. „Rail Cargo Hungaria has grown into a success story in a competitive environment serving as an example for the cooperative and sustainable economic relations between Austria and Hungary. It is an immense credit for the Austrian School that Rail Cargo Hungaria commits itself to the investment into this scholarship program. I hereby express my gratitude to RCH for the support it gives to our schools and I hope that this cooperation will go on for many years" – she added.
Dr. Imre Kovács pointed out that "despite that rail freight transport is a branch which is developing dynamically offering outstanding career opportunities for young people; it is still struggling with the lack of new recruits in Hungary, Austria and everywhere else in Europe. The market-leader company therefore is supporting youth development on all levels of education".
„Promoting the education of young generations is an important and rewarding investment for our company" – said Dr. Kovács. „Beside the Austrian School of Budapest we concluded an agreement with the Vocational Training Centre in Szekszárd (Szekszárdi Szakképzési Centrum) and the Apáczai Csere János Secondary School of Dombóvár about wagon inspection training for baccalaureates. We motivate pupils who would like to become locomotive drivers in the SZC Bánki Donát Grammar School of Dunaújváros".
„We created dual-system training in cooperation with the Budapest Business School. At the universities of Dunaújváros and Debrecen we prepare students interested in high-level railway profession in a credit-system. We use our experiences gained during the years of cooperation with the Austrian School of Budapest to reach our goals in training new recruits".
Dr. Imre Kovács emphasized in his conclusion that the cooperation symbolises the strengthening of Austro-Hungarian cultural and economic partnership.
Mrs. Margot Wieser, principal of the Austrian School of Budapest told at the ceremony that the successes of her school have many reasons: they work with an experienced, motivated team of teachers, all sitting in one boat and – more important – they look at their pupils as real partners. The basis of fruitful learning is value judgement and the trust between teacher and student. The results are honoured with good marks and moreover with personal feedback and praise. One nice example is the award of the Rail Cargo Hungaria scholarships.
The program was concluded by a cultural program of the students.
About the Austrian School of Budapest
The Austrian School of Budapest is one of 7 Austrian schools operating abroad and among the best performing grammar schools in Hungary. The school committed itself to maintain and deepen Austro-Hungarian relationships in an international agreement. During its 27 years of existence students with high-level German language skills finished their studies in this institution and were welcomed by German speaking companies or institutions with Austrian relations. The involvement of differentiated education methods and the provision of additional possibilities in support of the academic success of talented pupils are essential for a successful grammar school. Learning is the responsibility of students, whereas the Academic Scholarship Program of Rail Cargo Hungaria is a motivating factor.
Rail Cargo Hungaria Zrt.
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Tel.: 06 1 512 7323
Dr. Miklós Seszták, minister for national development awarded two colleagues of Rail Cargo Hungaria Zrt. with by the Medal of Merit for Traffic (Közlekedésért Érdemérem)
Mrs. Sándorné Csernus, operational regulation expert and Mr. Zsolt Gilányi, technical operation expert.
Mrs. Éva Sándorné Csernus has been working with the railway for 37 years. She supported the modernisation and transformation processes of MÁV, MÁV Cargo, and later Rail Cargo Hungaria with her experience. She has always been focusing on the given tasks, serving the realisation of our company's strategic goals with diligence and extraordinary accuracy. She contributes efficiently to the preparation of modernisation proposals of legislation. Her professional preparedness, arduous attitude and persistence are exemplary.
Mr. Zsolt Gilányi started his railway career as wagon inspection supervisor 34 years ago. Later he joined MÁV Cargo seeking new challenges, and continued his work at Rail Cargo Hungaria with excellent expertise and resilience. He implemented the function of the company's wagon inspection system at international level. During his working years he managed to maintain excellent relationships with his co-workers; was consequent and accurate while preparing management decisions. His commitment and work serves as example to be followed by his colleagues.
Rail Cargo Hungaria Zrt. discussed with its forwarding partners the actual domestic and international market situation of rail freight transport as well as the reasons and consequences of the correction of charges enforced by the market.
Price adjustment is necessary to keep up the efficiency
Dr. Imre Kovács, chairman of the board, CEO told during his analysis of the rail freight transport market that the share of rail freight transport in Hungary has gone back from 24% to 17,5% since the turn of the millennium. The number of registered railway logistic companies however has tripled at the same time. The companies therefore were forced to rationalise: the adopted their transport equipment to the decreasing demand, cut down development, and drew less attention to the education of specialists and labour supply. All this have led to lack of capacities and downgraded efficiency.
The situation was made even worse by the track obstructions due to constructions. These obstructions are planned to be maintained at several important lines for months in the following year as well. The bypass routes will require significant additional human-and tractive resources.
Revenue-producing capabilities to be increased
Dr. Imre Kovács pointed out that in the past 5 years the gap between transport charges and own costs grew year on year causing the expenditures to exceed the revenues by 15%, while efficiency went back by 20%. "This tendency has to be stopped" – he stated. The sustainment of such company of this size can only be realised by investments in new assets and this requires the increase of revenue-producing capabilities of Rail Cargo Hungaria. The implementation of a sustainable tariff structures will be enforced by the market's expanding capacities and enhanced demands for quality assurance investments. Therefore – mainly in the block train traffic – prices need to be adjusted.
We are interested in maintaining long-term customer relationships – Mr. Kovács told in his conclusion. As for the single wagon load traffics the services will be improved to secure country-wide coverage of RCH being the only provider of such services in Hungary.
New terms and conditions of transportation
The colleagues of Rail Cargo Hungaria's commercial department will negotiate the terms and conditions of transportation for the year 2018 individually with the customers for each business separately. In general the planned tariff foresees a rise of 6%.