In the world of logistics, an obscure cause can trigger a resounding effect in a remote section of the world far away from the source of the phenomenon. This scenario is presently applicable in the stories of Khorgos and Siemianowka. The first thing to note is that the two towns are in different countries, Khorgos is in landlocked Kazakhstan while Siemianowka is located in Poland. The only common denominator between these two towns could be traced to trade.
The two serene towns are being thrown into limelight by the Chinese grand plan to open up the global trade routes through land and sea at a grand level never experienced before. Welcome to the Belt & Road Initiative. In the case of the two towns, we are specifically looking at the ‘Belt’ section of the global project. As part of the initiative, Khorgos is paying host to a massive inland Dry Port which would be serviced majorly by rail lines. (See Khorgos: The Gateway Dry Port)
Siemianowka came into the picture due to one critical reason: There exists two rail line gauges along the cargo route. While China utilizes the standard rail gauge, the rest of the eastern Europe countries, which would serve as conduit for the inland cargoes, uses the Russia gauge which ends in- guess what… Siemianowka, Poland. It is from this town that the standard gauge rail takes the cargoes the rest of the way to mainland Western Europe. Due to this innovation, the cargo transportation dynamics becomes simple, Chinese containerized cargoes are transferred from Russian-gauge trains onto Standard-gauge trains on the to journey, while the reverse is the case on the fro journey.