Cargo Transport to be linked by train from China to Germany

  • to shorten the traveling time from 40 days to 18 days between Beijing and Hamburg.

China and five other nations are to cooperate on a train link between Asia and Europe that would speed up cargo transport and allow goods to be delivered twice as quickly as by sea.

China, Mongolia, Russia, Belarus, Poland and Germany signed an agreement on Wednesday, Jan 9 that will speed up transport of goods and cargo between Asia and China and halve current traveling time by sea.

The treaty aims to simplify customs and border checks, according to the China Daily.

"Barring any complications, a scheduled container train should be shuttling between China and Germany in a year's time," said Zheng Mingli, chairman of China Railway Container Transport, according to the report.

The route, which will link Beijing and Hamburg, is expected to boost trade and cargo flows between the two continents and would allow goods to be delivered in a record 18 days. Currently, delivery of cargo by sea between the two destinations takes about 40 days.

"Investments will pay off"

A test container train carrying a load of Chinese goods, including electrical appliances, clothes, shoes and ceramic tiles, rolled out of Beijing on Wednesday and is expected to arrive in Hamburg in 18 days.

The train will travel through the Mongolian Republic and the Trans Siberian railway via Belarus and Poland before making its way to the port city of Hamburg.

Flagging off the test cargo train in Beijing, Hartmut Mehdorn, CEO of German rail Deutsche Bahn, said the transport axis between Asia and Europe has never been more important in light of booming economic growth in Asia and Russia.

"Deutsche Bahn has recognized the trend early. Those are investments that will in the long-term pay off for Germany's economy," Mehdorn said. "Today, we're inaugurating a further important step in the realization of a common Eurasian bridge," he said.

German train technology is already well known in China. China currently operates the world's only commercial German-built MAGLEV line, which runs 300 kilometers from Shanghai's airport to the financial center in the Pudong district. The train travels at up to 430 kilometers (270 miles) per hour.

(Deutsche Welle)

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