Maersk has announced the launch of its AE77 service, a weekly intermodal freight service from Asia to Southern Europe.

The first containers coming from Asia on this new regular service arrived at the largest Russian port of Vostochny on Sealand vessels, according to Maersk’s announcement and on 22 April, the boxes were dispatched by train from the Russian VSC terminal to NUTEP terminal at the port of Novorossiysk, also on Russian soil. From Novorossiysk, the cargo now resumes by sea to destinations in Ukraine and Turkey.

“The launch of AE77 is an important milestone in Maersk´s expansion of our transcontinental intermodal offering, combining rail and sea,” said Zsolt Katona head of Maersk Eastern Europe, who went on to explain, “The new route is an excellent alternative since our customers can be confident about fixed-day arrival and have full flexibility between various delivery options that best match their logistics needs.”

Like Maersk’s AE19 intermodal service from Asia to Northern Europe, this new AE77 service from Asia to the Black Sea and the East Mediterranean area uses the Trans-Siberian route. The largest part of the trip takes place across Siberia using Russian railways’ infrastructure, arranged in co-operation with rail company Modul.

Zsolt Katona noted that Maersk’s aim is a “reliable and flexible option, a service that runs without bottlenecks, and with fast transit times of about 25 to 30 days.”

Given the increasing customer demand of AE19 and AE77 services, Maersk has deployed an additional vessel between Busan, at the Southern part of the Korean peninsula, and Vostochny, the intermodal container port at the Eastern end of the Trans-Siberian Railway.

Meanwhile, transportation on the AE77 is covered with a regular bill of lading from Maersk and uses Maersk’s standard booking platform.

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