Pakistan Railways has successfully launched the country’s first ever Reefer Freight Train, seeking to deliver more cost-effective and environmentally friendly freight options.
According to details, in December 2021, the Marine Group of Companies, in partnership with Pakistan Railways, achieved a milestone by operating Pakistan’s first ever containerized refrigerated train, which departed from the dry port of Marine International Container Terminal (MICT) Prem Nagar, Lahore and arrived at Wazir Mansion Karachi.
This intermodal cold chain solution enabled by ‘Pakistan Railways Freight Transportation Company (PRFTC) who facilitates the rail infrastructure operated by ‘Pakistan Intermodal Limited’ (PIL) and CMA CGM Pakistan providing commercial support for this new cold chain corridor.
From the past 05 years Pakistan Intermodal Ltd is playing a pivotal role in operating containerized freight trains in Pakistan and realizing the potential of Reefer containers, operated Pakistan’s first ever reefer block train carrying 24 Units – 40 feet reefers of CMA CGM Pakistan from MICT – Dry port at Prem Nagar – Lahore to Wazir Mansion Karachi and transported the Reefer boxed through PakGo trucking short haul services to Karachi Port completing the journey successfully.
The new operational phase begins with one train a week with plans for this service to operate twelve trains in a month. Freight trains can minimize the delivery time and reduce emissions to the atmosphere of greenhouse gasses. On average, railroads are three to four times more fuel efficient than trucks. That means moving freight by rail instead of truck lowers greenhouse gas emissions by up to 75%, on average.
As more and more road-based reefer cargo finds its way to more economically and environmentally viable options. Pakistan Intermodal Limited (PIL) reefer block train system can generate billions of rupees annually in revenue for Pakistan Railways if the containerized freight trains are operated on schedule.