Japan hitches a ride on freight trains from Fujian to Europe
A cargo train loaded with goods from Japan's Yokohama city departed from Xiamen for Duisburg, Germany on April 10.
The goods, primarily bicycles, ball arms and bags, were first transported by sea from Yokohama to Xiamen port and then loaded onto the rail express train to Europe upon arrival, a great drop in travel time -- 22 days versus 37 days -- when compared with transporting the goods wholly by sea.
According to Chen Lucao, manager of the Xiamen International Railway Services Co Ltd, the fact that Japan has been included in rail services will draw wide attention from global clients and more efforts will be made to enhance related services so as to bolster trade among Belt and Road Initiative countries.
Xiamen has so far launched freight train services to a number of European countries including Germany, Russia and Hungary.
Since the inauguration of services on Aug 2015, the routes have become some of the busiest cross-border rail links in China. Official data show that as of March 31, a total of 387 trips had been made via the lines, transporting 236,100 tons of goods. In the first quarter of 2019, 27 freight trains left Xiamen for Europe.