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Eastern Siberian cos start shipping coal to Murmansk port

Coal mining companies in Irkutsk Region and Buryatia have begun shipping coal for export through a port in Murmansk, the head of Russian Railways’ (RZD) East Siberian Railway, Vadim Vladimirov told reporters on Friday.

The Trans-Siberian Railway heading east is now congested and having everyone ship to the Far East is a “constraining factor,” he said. “And today trains left for Murmansk from Chelutai station, Vostsibugol also went there,” Vladimirov said.

Chelutai, in Buryatia, is the main loading station for SUEK’s Tugnuisky open-pit mine, which produces hard coal. Vostsibugol, a division of En+ Group, ships hard coal from its Cheremkhovsky mine from Kasyanovka station in Irkutsk Region.

Commenting on the results of 2023, Vladimirov said RZD fulfilled all its obligations to ship coal from Irkutsk Region.

It was reported earlier that hard and brown coal loading on the East Siberian Railway rose 3.2% to 28.1 million tonnes in 2023, as loading in Irkutsk Region increased by 6.9% to 15.8 million tonnes while loading in Buryatia fell 1.2% to 12.3 million tonnes.

It was also reported that RZD signed agreements with a number of regions on coal shipments eastward in 2024. The company committed to shipping 3.3 million tonnes of hard coal for export from Irkutsk Region and 8.5 million tonnes from Buryatia.