The Romanian railway company CFR aims to rebuild the old wide-gauge railway connecting the Port of Galati (Romania) to Giurgiulesti, the International Free Port in Moldova, across the Moldovan that freight trains carrying grain from Ukraine may reach ships without having to change wheels at the border. Currently, the ex-soviet countries, such as Ukraine or the Republic of Moldova, have a different distance between the railway lines than the European countries. The decision was taken to prevent or make it harder for the enemies during the Cold War to invade the country by transporting heavy equipment and ammunition on rails. This is still a problem when it comes to commercial exchange on railways.
According to the Romanian Transport Minister Sorin Grindeanu, this Danube port, along with the port of Constanța, will become one of the crucial hubs in the region for the transportation of goods and raw materials.
We are rapidly operationalizing the railway lines in the Port of Galati. May 19, 2022 is the deadline for the tender for the repair of the wide gauge railway line between Giurgiulesti (Republic of Moldova) and the port of Galati.Sorin Grindeanu, Romanian Minister of Transport
The Port of Galaţi has the benefit of loading both river and sea vessels. Despite growing insurance prices due to the war and mines in Black Sea waters, Grindeanu believes that transporting Ukrainian grain through the Black Sea remains the most cost-effective option.
Ukraine exports most grain to South Africa, and the Black Sea is the shortest route. The alternatives would be through the port of Gdansk or Trieste, but the routes will be longer.Sorin Grindeanu, Romanian Minister of Transport
Romania could become a regional grain transportation hub during these challenging times created by the conflict in Ukraine. This can be achieved if the government moves fast and ensures the necessary infrastructure to take over, deposit, and load the grains to be transported to international destinations.