China-Europe Express celebrates ten year anniversary
The 19th of March 2021 marks a significant landmark in Eurasian rail transportation. Ten years ago, on the 19th of March 2011, the first train of the China-Europe express departed and started a new era for rail freight. Since then, things have changed, and the service has experienced growth, with many more developments already being on the way.
This time of the year, ten years ago, the first China-Europe freight train left Chongqing in Southeast China, with its final destination being Duisburg in Germany. On its way to Europe, it crossed Kazakhstan, Russia, Belarus and finally Poland. In the beginning, it wasn’t branded as the China-Europe Express but as the Yu-Xin-Ou train or Chongqing-Xinjiang-Europe International Railway, which later developed to the most emblematic Eurasian connection.
Many companies had experimented with direct services from China to Europe before 2011. For instance, back in 2008, Foxconn dispatched its first train connecting Shenzhen with Europe and later in 2009, DB Schenker started operating a weekly itinerary between Shanghai and Duisburg.
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