Russia has removed transit restrictions on European fresh products transported by rail through Russia to third countries, for example China, from 1st July 2019.

Almost 100% of rail traffic from Europe to China passes through Russia. This new policy provides an opportunity for European shippers to increase trading and rail freight volumes.

Russian logistics companies plan to double volumes next year and increase the traffic to China. Currently 20% of containers go back to China empty, so new products allowed to transit via Russia will increase the backhaul balance.

There are concerns over rail capacity. The enormous EU transits through Russia can create an excessive workload and congestion at Russian borders.

Products that are available for transit include:
– Fresh and frozen pork & beef meat
– Poultry meat and co-products
– Lard and fat from other types of meat
– Live fish and shellfish
– Milk and dairy products
– Vegetable, root crops and tubers
– Fruits and nuts
– Sausages
– Salt
– Other food products

To transit cargo through the Russian territory, it is compulsory to attach electronic seals on containers for tracking purpose, and ensure specific products are in compliance with the Russian classification prior to shipping.

There are currently lots of amendments on the list, so it is strongly recommended to check the specific product before shipping.