Forwarders’ perceptions of the Silk Route: The case of Finland
Paper in proceedings, 2018

The Silk Route is an emerging transportation initiative that aims to connect Europe and Asia by rail link–landbridge. This study investigates freight forwarders’ perceptions of potential benefits for Finland from developing Silk-Route-based transportation solutions. Ten semi-structured interviews with eight freight forwarding and carrier companies in Finland, Russia, Kazakhstan, and China were conducted. The study findings show that there is a demand to transport cargo via the landbridge between China and Europe. Block trains have been running from Germany and Finland to China, suggesting that there is a demand as well as a potential for developing this route. Despite the challenge of a relatively small economy, there is potential for Finland to benefit by its engagement in the Silk Route. A Scandinavian hub in Finland would ensure sufficient volumes to fill block trains, which is the only profitable option for long-distance railway transportation.

block train

Eurasian rail transportation


Silk Route





Alena Khaslavskaya

Chalmers, Technology Management and Economics, Service Management and Logistics

Olli-Pekka Hilmola

Lappeenranta University of Technology (LUT)

Violeta Roso

Chalmers, Technology Management and Economics, Service Management and Logistics

TRA 2018 - A digital era for transport: solutions for society, economy and environment


7th Transport Research Arena TRA 2018
Vienna , Austria,

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Transport Systems and Logistics

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