Dear employees, friends, customers, and partners:
Another eventful year is drawing to a close. Yet we do not want to dwell on the global economic and political situation, as we are confronted with it in manifold ways every day, while having little influence on these frame conditions.
It is gratifying that we can, in spite of these conditions, look back on a successful business year and take stock of positive developments. We were able to continue pursuing our geographic and product-oriented strategy – the following examples serve to illustrate the fact.
Since spring, our teams in Uzbekistan and Russia have been handling a new block train connection between the Russian port of Vostochny and Tashkent; the service includes port handling, too. Meanwhile, owing to high demand, there is a train departure every ten days in both directions. InterRail Uzbekistan moreover launched cistern wagon transports within Central Asia. The first order, transporting 10,000 tons of bitumen from Turkmenistan to Uzbekistan, will be finalized by the end of this year.
In 2018 we were also able to further increase the number of our regular trains between China and Europe and vice versa, while also always exploring new routes. Thus, we recently ran a successful test using Cologne as a hub for one of our trains ex Yiwu to Madrid. We now regularly use Kaliningrad, too, as a transit hub at the juncture between the 1520mm and 1435mm gauges. As one of the few block train operators along this trade lane, we want to professionally assist our customers also in 2019 with our in-depth expertise.
We continued growing in India, where, in August, we opened a new office in New Delhi – an important industrial site, not least owing to exports to the CIS. In Kazakhstan, too, we took on new personnel; we now operate an additional sales office in Astana, where we also have a delegate, who is positioned with our partner company KTZ Express.
All these developments are owed of course to the trust and the loyalty our customers have in our company. We would like to take the opportunity to extend our sincere thanks. Without reliable sub-contractors and agents, we would not be able to master all the challenges; it is therefore of major importance to us to be considered as a reliable and loyal partner.
And, to finish, here comes the most important part: this year again, we were able to count on a fantastic team of employees, most of whom have been with us for many years already, employees who implement, with enormous commitment and motivation, what we together have defined as our strategic course. For this, we also want to express our warmest thanks – knowing that this cannot be taken for granted!
We hope to be able to count on our customers’ trust as well as on the support of our partners and employees also in 2019 – please accept our thanks in advance!
We wish you all a peaceful holiday season in the company of family and friends, and a good start into the New Year.