Why Indian Railways is betting on double-stack dwarf containers to increase freight revenue

      07/11/2018

The Indian Railways has introduced a commercial service to run double-stack dwarf containers on trains to capture the lost traffic through new delivery model for domestic cargo, the ministry said.

The containers are shorter in size and can run on electrified tracks. They enable the railways in double-stack movement of cargo and have increased the ministry’s revenue.

This freight train was flagged off on July 7 from Western Railway’s Rajkot railway station on its maiden commercial run.

In a statement, the ministry said the train was booked from Reliance Rail Siding at Kanalus to Rewari in Haryana and was loaded with 82 containers carrying polypropylene granules.

“Due to this double stacked dwarf container service, Indian Railways has received increased revenue of Rs 18.50 lakh,” the ministry said.

A double-stack container is 6 ft 4 inches in height.

Despite being smaller in size, the dwarf containers can hold a capacity of 30,500 kgs compared to regular containers.

By using the dwarf containers, the cost will be significantly reduced since rail transport is cheaper than road, the ministry said, adding that these containers can run easily on most tracks.

It emphasised that currently low-density products such as plastic granules, PVC polyester fabric, white goods, FMCG products, polyethylene and auto cars are being transported mostly by road, but due to low cost of transportation in dwarf containers, the railways now offers a “viable transport”.

At the general freight rate, the double-stack dwarf container trains can generate more than 50 per cent of the revenue, the ministry said.