Belarus finds new rail routes to export goods amidst sanctions


Belarusian Railways says it has developed a total of 40 new export routes to more than 20 countries, now that sanctions have cut off its traditional routes to the global market. The Transport and Communications Ministry of Belarus reported these figures, as quoted by the government-owned media site BelTA.

«In the new realities, Belarusian Railways, together with cargo owners and logistics companies from Belarus, Russia, Kazakhstan, Azerbaijan and China, developed a total of 40 new transport and logistics routes to deliver Belarusian products to more than 20 countries,» the ministry statement reads.

Shift to rail

The ministry noted that since February 2022, the ports in the Baltic countries have been unavailable for Belarus because of the sanctions. In addition, it is impossible for Belarus to use the ports of Ukraine.

Instead, Belarusian transport is now making use of the railway network to other markets, such as East Asia. According to the Belarusian ministry, Belarusian Railways provides sufficient rolling stock to facilitate the export demand.

More to the east

According to the ministry, from January through July 2022, there was an increase in the volume of traffic to Azerbaijan, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Russia (including Russian ports), and Uzbekistan. Meanwhile, the number of container trains from Belarus to China rose five times.

Analytics on topic
EBRD researches sustainable transport connections between Central Asia and Europe

As trade volumes, particularly container traffic, between Asia and Europe continue to grow and as geopolitical events disrupt existing trade corridors, major trading and logistics companies are exploring ways to diversify and optimise transport routes and make them more sustainable.

The European Rail Freight Market Competitive Analysis and Recommendations

On December 9, 2020, the European Commission presented its Strategy for Sustainable and Smart Mobility with an action plan of 82 initiatives for 2021-2024. Is the EU transport system capable of achieving its green and digital transformation?