Boston, MA -- (SBWIRE) -- 07/02/2012 -- Road is projected to remain the dominant form of freight transport in 2012, with BMI projecting it to account for 85.1% of Poland's total freight. Rail freight is, however, the area to watch in BMI's opinion, with the sector carving out more market share, a trend projected to continue over the medium term as rail freight carriers expand their operations and a push from the EU leads to a region-wide drive to move more cargo volumes from road to rail.
In 2012 we forecast Poland's rail freight to account for 14.7% of the total cargo carried in Poland, in volumes terms the sector will increase by 2.1% y-o-y to 236mn tonnes. While rail freight trails the road haulage sector considerably in Poland, developments in the short and medium-term, offer upside to BMI's forecasts for volumes and the potential for this sector to increase its market share at the expense of road's share of the market.
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The key driver of Poland's rail fright development in the short stems from the companies that operate within it. The domestic carrier has become more competitive as a result of the opening up of the market, which saw German provider DB Schenker create a Polish unit. BMI projects this competition to increase with the state owned carrier PKP Cargo up for privatisation - a new owner will likely bring new expertise and investment into the sector.
The three major operators in the market - PKP Cargo, DB Schenker Rail Polska and CTL Logistics -are expanding their operating remits, increasing the amount of cross-border routes that they offer, thereby breaking out of the confines of the domestic market and offering regional freight solutions, putting rail freight in direct competition with the road haulage sector.
The cross-border trend has been particularly evident this quarter, with DB Schenker and PKP Cargo increasing their routes to link Poland by rail to its neighbours and in the case of DB Schenker even further afield, with expanded services linking the country to the UK and Italy.
In the medium term we project not only domestic rail freight demand to increase, but also cross-border services, a major catalyst for this is the EU drive to decrease carbon emissions and bring down congestion on European roads and so there is a regional push to move freight off the road onto other transport modes. In the case of Poland, while inland waterway options exist, we expect rail freight to be the major beneficiary of any freight diversification.
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