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December 24, 2003

Sverdlovskaya Railway Declared Uralkali the Best Transport Partner of the Year 2003

It is for the second time that Uralkali becomes a winner of the competition "Partner of the Year."

In Ekaterinburg awards were presented to the winners of the second annual competition "Partner of the Year" conducted by the management of the Sverdlovskaya Railway among enterprises cooperating with the railway. The winners of the competition are 24 largest enterprises of the Urals and the Volga Federal Districts. On the basis of the competition results Uralkali was declared winner in the category "Best Transport Partner" and Maxim Shirokov, General Director of Uralkali, was presented with a badge and a winner's certificate.

"This award means, above all, high assessment of the work of Uralkali's transport service," said Maxim Shirokov. "It is true that Uralkali is doing a great deal to optimize railway carriage and the railway is actively helping us in this.. To a large degree we owe our success to the entire collective of the Sverdlovskaya Railway, the undisputed leader in the region. I am grateful to the head of the Sverdlovskaya Railway, Alexandr Misharin, for cooperation and effective interaction in solving our common tasks."

It is for the second time that Uralkali becomes a winner of the competition "Partner of the Year." Last year, Uralkali was declared winner in the category "Best Consignor," in which consideration was given to shipment volumes and indicators characterizing efficient utilization of the rolling stock. This time, the main criterion for choosing the winner in the category "Best Transport Partner" was efficient interaction between the enterprise and the railway in all areas of their activity, specifically, in the optimization of the cargo carriage process.

In January 2003, the management of Uralkali and the Sverdlovskaya Railway concluded a cooperation agreement. Its aim is to pool the efforts in increasing the volumes of cargo carriage and cut down transport costs. Since that time the company and the railway have already carried out several large projects.

In the first place, it is the organization of an effective information exchange between specialists of Uralkali and the Sverdlovskaya Railway. The exchange of electronic messages, changeover from paper data mediums to the modern means of communications have resulted in personnel changes, higher professionalism of the staff of both parties to the agreement. Last year, the transport service of Uralkali formed a logistics division - a single center controlling transport flows, warehouse and port stocks. For the first time in many years it became possible to optimize the cargo carriage process and establish coordination between all of its participants.

"At present, our main marketing port is the Baltic Bulker Terminal. We are in one information space and communicate on a real-time basis with all participants in the carriage process," says Uralkali's Executive Director Maxim Bakshinsky. "Uralkali is the only enterprise in the chemical industry of Russia, which has established such multilateral interaction system between the consignor, forwarder, consignor railway, consignee railway, terminal and port."

One of the most important joint projects carried out by Uralkali and the Sverdlovskaya Railway in 2003 is connected with upgrading of the carriage technology and introduction of a new ore-carriage tariff. In addition to this Uralkali is consistently reducing the number of railway cars owned by OAO RZhD. The cars returned to the Sverdlovskaya Railway participate in the carriage process, help the railway increase cargo carriage volumes and thus generate additional income due to the tariff component. In 2003, the rolling stock leased by the company decreased by 1000 railway cars while the volume of carriage of mineral fertilizers went up 8% compared to the previous year.




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