NORWAY: On January 4 DB Schenker launched North Rail Express, a freight service linking Oslo's Alnabru terminal with Narvik in the north. There are five return trips a week, taking a competitive 28 h to cover the 1 960 km route via Sweden.
The operator is expecting to carry 25 000 containers a year, and has a contract to transport new road vehicles to northern Norway. Return traffic will include fish and other local products.
The trains are hauled by Green Cargo, and compete with a service provided by CargoNet. Preparations to launch the service took a year, with DB Schenker Rail purchasing flat and twin-section pocket wagons suitable for the conditions beyond the Arctic Circle.