Salt does not pull


Manufacturers lack locomotives to ship products

The largest Russian salt producer, Orenburg Russalt, faced difficulties in shipping products. Due to the lack of locomotive traction at Russian Railways, the company was unable to ship about 20% of salt in January, which led to a decrease in consumer stocks. Russalt is asking Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin to intervene in the situation. JSC Russian Railways assures that the fleet of locomotives is sufficient.

The director of the largest Russian salt producer, Orenburg Russalt, Sergey Cherny, asked Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin to pay attention to the current situation at Russian Railways with the delivery of salt to consumers. Kommersant has a copy of the letter dated February 4.

As stated in the appeal, since the beginning of 2022, up to ten trains with the company’s cars have been idle on the tracks of the Iletsk-1 station, not far from the Russalt field, mainly due to the lack of locomotive traction. As a result, in January “Russalt” did not take out 18% of finished products – 240 wagons.

The problem is getting worse every day and is spreading throughout the Russian Railways network, the letter says.

Sergey Cherny writes that “Russalt” addressed the Ministry of Transport and Russian Railways on the issue, but the situation does not change. As noted in the letter, Russian Railways explains the difficulties with breakdowns of locomotives, untimely repairs, lack of people and spare parts. In addition, they continue in Russalt, Russian Railways gives priority to container trains that run on a high-speed schedule without restrictions.

As noted in the letter of “Russalt”, the untimely export of products has already led to a reduction in the stocks of some consumers to a minimum. According to a company representative, there are delays in both technical and edible salt shipments and could affect consumers across the country.

Russalt combines the Iletskoye, Baskunchakskoye and Usolskoye deposits with total reserves of more than 4.5 billion tons. According to the results of January-June 2021, the company produced more than 1.2 million tons of salt, occupying 42.6% of the Russian market.

Dmitry Vostrikov, executive director of Rusprodsoyuz, explains that salt for industrial consumers is shipped in huge volumes and is transported exclusively by rail. And in view of the problems in the road transport industry, finding a replacement for wagons for the delivery of salt is also problematic, he notes. Lenta said they were seeing problems with the supply of salt from a number of producers, some of which were asked to suspend shipments. There are no problems with the availability of goods due to the redistribution of the assortment. Magnit did not receive notifications of delays in the supply of salt, Auchan has no problems with supplies.

The press service of the government told Kommersant that they had sent a letter from Russalt to the Ministry of Transport and Russian Railways. The Ministry of Transport confirmed that the appeal is under consideration.

Details on the website of the Kommersant newspaper:  WWW.KOMMERSANT.RU/DOC/5217414