Dr. Rüdiger Grube, Deutsche Bahn AG
The transportation and logistics industry is facing major challenges following Russia’s accession to the WTO and implementation of the customs union among Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan. Involvement in international economic organizations will accelerate integration into global flows of goods and generate transport volume but will also expose railways – regardless of the gauge – to greater competition with other modes of transportation.
Our objective must therefore be to protect rail’s ability to compete in global logistics chains. We must continue to take advantage of synergies with other modes of transportation and to use rail’s environmental advantages to offer our customers reliable, top-quality transports that are worth their price.
And much is well within our control. The impressive collaboration among railways to establish regular container train connections between China and Central Europe demonstrates not only the will, but also the success that has been achieved in permanently overcoming technical and technological challenges.
That’s why I am delighted that so many decision-makers, politicians and experts from over 30 countries have gathered together again this year here in Sochi for the VII international “Strategic Partnership 1520” rail forum with a common goal: strengthening rail in global commerce and transportation – beyond gauge boundaries. As official international partner, Deutsche Bahn AG is up to the challenge.
I wish you, and all of us, successful discussions and an enjoyable exchange in this unique atmosphere.
Chairman of the Management Board and CEO, Deutsche Bahn AG, Dr. Rüdiger Grube.