CPKC’s 2023-24 grain service outlook report

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Canadian Pacific Kansas City (CPKC) published its 2023-24 Grain Service Outlook Report, outlining plans to transport Canada’s grain crop for export. The company has invested in new equipment and offers access to North American and Mexican markets, and has invested over $500 million in purchasing 5,900 new high-capacity grain hopper cars to support its operations. However, challenges include recent strikes at Vancouver’s port, potential labour disruptions, loading issues, poor weather, and policies risking rail efficiency. Maximizing grain exports requires using available supply chain capacity throughout the crop year. Furthermore, the revival of extended interswitching on the prairies by the government risks undermining rail efficiency and capacity, increasing transportation costs for all rail network users and diverting investment and jobs to the United States. During the 2022-2023 crop year, low demand for Canadian grain transportation, especially during the spring period, resulted in significant unused capacity on CPKC’s rail network, hampering Canada’s ability to maximize grain exports to global markets.

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