Focus on rail and "Southeast Link" when Port of Karlshamn was visited by parliamentary committee on Transport & Communication

18. 01. 24

Yesterday Port of Karlshamn was visited by Mrs Pia Nilsson, Group leader of the Social Democrats in the Parliamentary Committee on Transport and Communication, accompanied by Committee member Suzanne Svensson. They were informed about the increasing activity in the port in general, but focus was on the positive development in rail cargo traffic on the port and the need for better access and capacity that can be achieved if the infrastructure project "Southeast Link" (Sydostlänken) is realised. It's about a 14 kilometres missing railway link connecting Karlshamn with Olofström. With this new link both Volvo Cars Body Components in Olofström and one of the major distribution centres of IKEA in Älmhult, would be connected with Karlshamn and the other ports in the County of Bleking. The link would not only cut lead times and increase capacity, but also reduce congestion on the main south-north line passing the rail hub Hässleholm. Representatives of Volvo Cars, EON Gas, Schenker, the Mayors of Karlshamn and Olofström and the Chairman of the Regional board also participated. They gave concrete examples of the need for the Southeast Link. The also underlined great importance the link has for the competitiveness of the regional industry with more efficient transportation of goods and better access for commuting employees and the national strategic importance of the link. Via DFDS Seaways ferry line Karlshamn-Klaipeda (9-10 departures per week in each direction) the fast growing emerging markets in the Baltic Countries, CIS states and the Silk Road are reached. Port of Klaipeda with the excellent rail infrastructure, also with russian rail gauge, creates a short cut to Sweden and Norway, instead of taking the detour via Germany and Poland. At the border between Poland and Belarussia, reloading is needed, due to change of rail gauge from West European to Russian gauge. The importance of Southeast Link and Port of Karlshamn in a larger context was well received by Mrs Pia Nilsson.