Japan Freight Railway Company

Japan Freight Railway Company (日本貨物鉄道株式会社, Nippon Kamotsu Tetsudō Kabushiki-gaisha), or JR Freight (JR貨物, Jeiāru Kamotsu), is one of the constituent companies of Japan Railways Group (JR Group). It provides transportation of cargo nationwide. Its headquarters are in Shibuya, Tokyo near Shinjuku Station.[1]

Japan Freight Railway Company
Native name
Nippon Kamotsu Tetsudō kabushiki gaisha
State-owned KK
PredecessorJapanese National Railways (JNR)
FoundedApril 1, 1987 (privatization of JNR)
5-33-8, Sendagaya, Shibuya, Tokyo
Servicesfreight services
other related services
OwnerJapan Railway Construction, Transport and Technology Agency (100%)
Number of employees
6,661 (as of April 1, 2010)[1]

The Japan Railways Group was founded on April 1, 1987, when Japanese National Railways (JNR) was privatized. Japanese National Railways was divided into six regional passenger rail companies and a single freight railway company, Japan Freight Railway Company.

The company has only about fifty kilometers of track of its own, and therefore operates on track owned by the six JR passenger railways as well as other companies which provide rail transport in Japan.


In 2017, only about 5% of all freight in Japan is carried by rail but nearly all of that, 99%, is carried by JR Freight.[2] Trucks carry about 50% and ships about 44%.[2] JR Freight has seen its share of the freight market gradually decrease since 1993. In the 2010s JR Freight has been carrying more freight because of the decrease in the number of available truck drivers due to age as well as government policy to reduce carbon dioxide.[2] JR Freight has run a deficit for many years.[3]


While major part of the operation of JR Freight is on the tracks owned and maintained by other JR companies, JR Freight owns the railway lines (as Category-1 railway business) as follows:

Hokuriku Main LineTsuruga Station - Tsuruga-Minato Freight TerminalFukui2.7
Kagoshima Main LineMojikō Station - Sotohama Freight TerminalFukuoka0.9
Chihaya Yard - Fukuoka Freight TerminalFukuoka2.2
Kansai Main LineYokkaichi Station - Shiohama StationMie3.3
Hirano Station - Kudara Freight TerminalOsaka1.4
Nippō Main LineObase-Nishikōdai-mae Station - Kandakō Freight TerminalFukuoka4.6
Ōu Main LineTsuchizaki Station - Akitakō Freight TerminalAkita1.8
Senseki LineRikuzen-Yamashita Station - Ishinomakikō Freight TerminalMiyagi1.8
Shin'etsu Main LineKami-Nuttari Junction - Nuttari Freight TerminalNiigata1.8
Kami-Nuttari Junction - Higashi-Niigatakō Freight TerminalNiigata3.8
Shinminato LineNōmachi Station - Takaoka Freight TerminalToyama1.9
Tohoku Main LineTabata Freight Terminal - Kita-Ōji Freight TerminalTokyo4.0
Tōkaidō Main LineSannō Junction - Nagoya-Minato Freight TerminalAichi6.2
Suita Junction - Osaka Freight TerminalOsaka8.7
Uetsu Main LineSakata Station - Sakatakō Freight TerminalYamagata2.7

Rolling stock

As of 1 March 2017, JR Freight owns and operates the following rolling stock:[4]

Diesel locomotives

Electric locomotives

Electric multiple units

Former rolling stock

See also


  1. Japan Freight Railway Company. "Corporate Overview". Retrieved November 16, 2011.
  2. "Japan firms shifting to trains to move freight amid dearth of new truckers". The Japan Times Online. 17 January 2017. Retrieved 12 April 2017.
  3. WISETJINDAWAT, W.; et al. (2015). "Rare Mode Choice in Freight Transport: Modal Shift from Road to Rail". Journal of the Eastern Asia Society for Transportation Studies. 11: 774–787. doi:10.11175/easts.11.774.
  4. JR貨物 機関車配置表 [JR Freight locomotive allocation list]. Tetsudo Daiya Joho Magazine (in Japanese). Vol. 46 no. 400. Japan: Kotsu Shimbun. August 2017. p. 42.
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