Container maritime shipping giants are developing railroad business

Maritime container operators are actively investing in inland logistics and rail transportation.

MSC has been actively developing its railroad business lately. Last autumn, the group won the tender to privatize the controlling interest in Renfe Mercancías, the freight carrier of Renfe, a Spanish national rail operator, as well as acquired around 50% of the shares of Italo, a private Italian high-speed rail operator, and founded a joint venture with Ferrovie dello Stato Italiane, an Italian state-owned railway corporation, to develop rail freight traffic between Italian ports and Europe. In February, it announced the acquisition of the Wärtsilä plant in Trieste, which is planned to be repurposed for the production of rail cars and bogies.

CMA CGM is also entering the rail container transportation market: GTS Rail, an Italian intermodal operator, announced its partnership with CMA CGM. According to a post published on LinkedIn, a joint venture company, European Container Network, was established as part of the partnership, which will initially provide rail container transportation in Italy and ultimately throughout Europe.

Maersk has been offering rail transportation services in Europe and Asia for a relatively long time.