Focus on Eastern Europe

Poland is developing into a hub for traffic flows between China and Europe.

How does Eastern Europe benefit from changing traffic flows between China and Europe? This was the question asked by the top management of a. hartrodt last week at a three-day Eastern Europe meeting in Moscow. The managing directors of the subsidiaries in Poland, Russia, the Czech Republic, Hungary and Romania were present. "In view of the development of the New Silk Roads, we have to redefine the flow of goods," sums up Willem van der Schalk, Regional Managing Director at a. hartrodt. Poland has an important hub function.

Truck transports with Polish partners

The shortest land route between China and Western Europe is via Poland. While ocean-going vessels need more than 40 days, the New Silk Roads by rail reduce the transport time on average to 16 to 18 days. Some of the containers are unloaded at Małaszewicze in eastern Poland and distributed by truck. In addition to the headquarters of the Polish company in Szczecin, a. hartrodt also offers land transport services in Gdansk, Warsaw, Wroclaw and Krakow. "The truck is an important mode of transport and we have excellent opportunities with our Polish partners," says van der Schalk.

More container services directly to Gdansk

The volumes are also increasing in Polish seaports and that is why the government in Warsaw introduced a special law on port development in the summer. In Gdansk, where a. hartrodt offers sea freight, the central port is being expanded. Gdynia will have an outer port, Świnoujście a container terminal. "In the past, Polish seaports were served by feeders via Hamburg, for example, but today there are more direct calls from Asia services," observes van der Schalk.

In Eastern Europe a. hartrodt has 165 employees, one of the most important locations is Budapest. "For over 20 years, we have regularly offered direct consolidated container transports to Hungary," says van der Schalk. From China to Hungary, more and more is transported via the Adriatic port of Koper (Slovenia).

Worldwide, a. hartrodt works according to uniform quality standards which are gradually certified in all country organizations according to the ISO 9001 standard. Poland and Hungary are the first countries to do so.