Archive for the ‘China’ Category

Nowak courts Chinese rail investors

Monday, 30 July 2012

China Railways CRH5 at Qinhuangdao. Photo 颐园新居.

(Click image to see original on Wikipedia and for licensing.)

Poland’s Transport Minister, Slawomir Nowak, has concluded a 5 day official visit to China. The visit took place at the invitation of China’s Transport Minister, Li Shenglin. The Polish delegation included Poland’s rail minister, Andrzej Massel, and the head of Poland’s Information and Foreign Investment Agency (PAIiIZ), Sławomir Majman. Other members of his delegation included representatives of PKP PLK, PKP Cargo, LHS, DCT, and the ports of Gdansk, Gdynia and Szczecin-Swinoujscie.

In China key meetings took place with the Deputy Minister for Trade, Zhong Shanan, and the Deputy Minister of Transport, Weng Mengyong, Other important meeting took place with representatives of some of China’s largest transport companies : China Shipping Container Lines, Cosco Shipping Line & Cosco Freight Forwarding Company, Shanghai Electric and the GeoHarbour Group.

Is it significant that meetings appear to have only taken place at deputy minister level? The official website of the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Chinese Transport Ministry – always keen to promote China to the rest of the world – are strangely silent on Nowak’s visit.

The purpose of the visit was to promote Poland as an attractive country for investment and a good place to do business in. Given the rapid transformation of China’s railways over the last two decade it is remarkable that no meetings appear to have been held with Chinese locomotive and rolling stock manufacturers, or with Chinese railway construction companies.

It is too early yet to judge whether the visit will succeed in its aims and improve relations between the two countries; a relationship which is still soured by mutual recriminations over the collapse of the Covec contract for building part of the A2 motorway.


Playing chicken

Sunday, 5 April 2009


The Yinghao Coal Railway. Portion of frame captured from Steam Train video by Misha Werder.

(Click to see video.)

Every so often, I hear comments about the ‘bad state’ of the track on the Smigiel Railway. So here, to put the state of the track in an international context, is a link to Misha Werder’s atmospheric video of the Yinghao Coal Railway in China. The C2 locomotives look like a locally built derivative of the Polish Px48. Now I wonder how much it would cost to acquire a C2 to run on one of SKPL’s narrow gauge railways?

The Ffestiniog Railway might know. Last year in November, they dragged a 762 mm gauge example across the Cob from Porthmadog and parked it at the back of Boston Lodge works. The Ffestiniog Railway is 600 mm gauge. Perhaps they hope that if they leave it out in the rain for long enough it will shrink?