DHL Global rail centre, image: dpdhl.com

New record on China-Germany railway link: 10-12 days

DHL Global Forwarding and Xi’an International Inland Port Investment & Development Group Co. Ltd have launched the fastest rail service from Xi’an in China to Hamburg and Neuss in Germany, cutting transit time from 17 to between 10 and 12 days. This significant lead time reduction was made possible by travelling through the Mamonovo-Braniewo railway border between Russia and Poland.

The new rail service takes an approximate 9,400-km route through Kazakhstan, Russia, Belarus, and Lithuania to Kaliningrad Oblast, a part of the Russian Federation on the south coast of the Baltic Sea, before entering the European Union via the Mamonovo-Braniewo crossing. The final stretch of the route crosses Poland into Germany to the port city of Hamburg, and to Neuss, an important logistics hub on the Rhine River across Düsseldorf. Other partners of the service are China Railway, Belintertrans, RTSB and UTLC ERA.

Real-time tracking

The Xi’an-Germany express rail connection will offer customers real-time milestone visibility, using GPS tracking of shipments, via the iSee software platform – giving shippers door-to-door visibility and insight into any shipping exceptions as they occur.

“Over the past four months, we have been working closely with DHL to test and start this express line. Both teams have showed a tremendously high degree of enthusiasm and professionalism”, said Qu Jinwei, General Manager, Xi’an International Inland Port Investment & Development Group Co. Ltd.

“As next steps, we will strive to make this express rail freight a success. Using the development model of ‘hub and industry integration’, we will leverage this service to strengthen the collaboration between the region’s manufacturing and trading sectors with international logistics. This would attract more industries to our region, fortifying their capabilities to gather resources from international supply chains and sharpening their competitive edges.”

Connecting hubs

Xi’an is one of the main Chinese hubs on the New Silk Road. It hosts major industries like mechanicals, electronics, bio-pharmaceuticals and automobile manufacturing. It already has a wide network of rail freight connections with Europe, among them in Germany. In 2018, has seen exports increase by 29 per cent year-on-year. At the same time, special economic zones in Greater Xi’an are attracting growing foreign investments as the city positions itself as a hub for Artificial Intelligence (AI), 5G infrastructure and cloud computing to enhance its manufacturing capabilities.

“Xi’an is at the heart of the New Silk Road economic belt, taking on the same important role as it once did during the ancient route of Marco Polo’s era”, said Steve Huang, CEO, DHL Global Forwarding China. “By boosting greater agility whilst offering the express rail service at reasonable costs, DHL Global Forwarding seeks to connect these fast-evolving industries to rising demand and market opportunities in Europe.”

New service Xi’an – Hamburg – Neuss

European Silk Road Summit

Do you want to know more about the New Silk Road and its latest developments? On 26 and 27 November the European Silk Road Summit takes place in Venlo, the Netherlands. At this two-day international event more than 35 speakers and around 250 delegates will share their experiences, expertise and latest news. Registration for the event is still open. The programme and speakers can be found on the website.

Author: Majorie van Leijen

Majorie van Leijen is editor of RailFreight.com, online magazine for rail freight professionals.

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