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You are here: Home » National News » Railways» Railways set ambitious target for freight next fiscal

Railways set ambitious target for freight next fiscal

10 February 2017 | Chennai


As long as rail freight is dependent on handful of commodities for its revenue, it's freight load targets will remain vulunerable, said IFTRT.

"If we see broad groups over 100 variety of goods (raw materials, intermediate and finished products) are moved by road freight. Thus, capacity of truck freight has better capacity to face to great extend, the wageries/uncertainties of cargo offerings in the market due to domestic and international factors," said IFTRT senior fellow and coordinator SP Singh.

According to the IFTRT report, it estimates that the cargo loading by Road : Rail freight( above 250 kms journey onwards) stands around 80:20. Singh said.

"In the last decade ( 2001 - 2016) , the scene for railways has been disappointing despite regularising 10% overloading by railways during Lalu Yadav regime in UPA government , the rail share in medium and long haul has shrunk from rail 35% to 20% in last decade and half.”

'Interestingly, the lower freight rates and special attractive seasonal concession schemes, the road freight inspite of facing various hurdles on highways, has been increasing."

"The freight forwarders have fixed retail freight charges for wide range of goods for time bound delivery to consignors/traders will a profit margin ranging 25%- 30% on different medium and long rail routes. The consignors felt more safe and confident with freight forwarder moving cargo on passenger train rakes rather than directly through rail booking and delivery system," said Singh.

The railways is rejigging it's load target of 1093 mt for 2016-17 and setting a more ambitious target of loading an incremental 72 mt in 2017-18. But this is going be a herculean task .

"The fact remains that railways have inherent inefficiencies and are totally reliant on low revenue earning bulk cargo basket with 50% dependency on single cargo like coal," said Singh. "This needs overhauling."

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