The head of Russian oil giant Rosneft and the Executive secretary of the Commission for Strategic Development of the Fuel and Energy Sector and Environmental Security Igor Sechin criticized local authorities and infrastructure companies for dormancy regarding the expansion of limited capacities of Trans-Siberian Railway (TSR) and Baikal-Amur Mainline (BAM).
On March 16, 2021 one of Vladimir Putin’s closest allies Igor Sechin asked Russian president to ensure the implementation of the decisions, taken during the meeting of the Commission in 2018.
The document, adopted during the meeting, provides for expansion of TSR and BAM railway capacities to increase Russian coal supplies eastwards to 195 mio t by 2025, of which not less than 100 mio t to the ports of Primorsky Krai, 85 mio t to the ports of Vanino and Sovgavan and about 10 mio t for exports via overland border crossings.
However, these figures contradict those, stipulated by the strategy of the development of the Russian coal industry until 2035, under which not only coal but total cargo deliveries eastwards shall grow to 180 mio t by 2024.
According to experts, current approach to the necessity of building Severomuysky tunnel-2 to expand the capacities of BAM may fall short of efficient solution.
Currently, Kuzbass deliveries are carried out via TSR, which is thought to have more potential for further expansion and higher significance for Russian coal exporters, whose mines are located in Kuzbass, Khakassia and Novosibirsk region. In order to bolster coal supplies form Yakutia to Vanino coal terminals other measures are needed, such as the development of the eastern part of BAM and Kuznetsovsky tunnel.
In addition, Igor Sechin accused stakeholders of obstructing the development of the Russian Far East, since they do nothing but stimulate southbound coal supplies via port of Taman at the expense of eastern direction.
In 2020 southbound rail shipments of coal for export increased to 20.04 mio t (+5.06 mio t or +34% to 2019). It is noteworthy that hike in southbound coal supplies caps Igor Sechin’ Rosneft oil cargo volumes.
Source: CAA Analytics
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