USAID supplies bogie exchange lifts to improve the efficiency of rail cargo operations 

BCP Renovation and Reconstruction
23 February 2024

The USAID’s Economic Resilience Activity (USAID ERA) has installed the first set of four bogie exchange lifts for Ukrzaliznytsia (UZ) at a railroad border crossing point (BCP) on the Romanian border. The remaining two sets from the USAID ERA total order of three sets are to be installed in March. Each set, which comprises four bogie lifts, can lift cargo weighing more than 100 tons.   

The lifts are an efficient way to change wheel bogies to move trains and wagons from the wider gauges to standard gaugesand vice versa, thereby eliminating the idle time associated with the replacement of bogies, enabling faster cargo movement between Ukraine and the EU. The installation of the 12 lifts will allow handling an additional 24 cargo per day, which will increase the capacity and efficiency of UZ’s cargo operations. For more than 15 years, this regional branch of UZ has not purchased any new lifts for any of its railway stations.  

The lifts are supplied by “TRADING HOUSE” MASHSERVIS” LTD (the actual manufacturer of the lifts is a subsidiary of Plasma Company LLC), a leading Ukrainian company based in Kharkiv that manufactures and supplies equipment for Ukraine and Europe, which won the USAID ERA competitive tender. Since 2006, the company has grown from a small commodity trading company to a manufacturer of industrial equipment, gradually developing and expanding into new areas of production. 

At the beginning of the war in Ukraine unleashed by Russia, the company’s operations were suspended, and they had to abandon many areas of development and some services. Four months later, they gradually began to resume production. At present, the company has identified the main areas of work that it plans to develop in the future the manufacture of railcar jacks, shunting devices for moving railcars, grab bars, winches, gearboxes, thermal equipment, and mining equipment.  

Today, the company produces almost all the parts needed to manufacture the equipment on its own. The trading house buys all the material for the manufacture of equipment from reliable suppliers from Ukraine and European countries, which ensures stable production. The main customers of “TRADING HOUSE” MASHSERVIS” LTD, are large metallurgical enterprises, ports, enterprises with railway infrastructure, mines, elevators, quarries, and mining and processing plants.    

Prior to Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine on February 24, 2022, the company sold 50% of its equipment on the domestic market and 50% was exported. For now, “TRADING HOUSE” MASHSERVIS” LTD, sells 80% of its products on the domestic market and 20% are exported. 

The company approaches each order individually. For example, as per ERA’s request, a 3D model of the equipment to be manufactured was developed, load calculations were performed, and only then was the production launched. It was hanks to the ERA order, that the company was able to set up a line for bogie exchange lift production, which created new jobs. 

The company has a large fleet of machine tools, so it manufactures almost all parts on its own. This makes it possible to control production at every stage. The manufactured equipment is checked for quality by the technical control department. In some cases, the company orders the services of a third-party expert to check the equipment.    

“TRADING HOUSE” MASHSERVIS” LTD ensures high quality standards through the ISO 9001 quality management system and complies with international safety and sustainability standards. The company’s products also comply with such standards as technical specifications and the State standards of Ukraine. 

As a reminder, ERA is modernizing Ukraine’s key rail and road border crossings with Moldova, Hungary, Slovakia, Romania, and Poland. This initiative aims to increase efficiency, improve accessibility, and increase the logistics capacity of key border crossings for Ukrainian exports. Grain, whose exports are important not only for Ukraine’s economy but also for global food security. 

Background: Between 2023-2026, USAID, through the Economic Resilience Activity (ERA), is dedicating $115 million to support the State Agency for Restoration and Development of Infrastructure of Ukraine (SARDI), Ukrainian Railways (UZ), and State Customs Services, to upgrade border crossing points (BCPs) to improve grain trade and export volumes.