Train on the Silk Road

Inner Mongolia strengthens position on Europe-China corridor

North China’s Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region is becoming increasingly important as a transit region for rail freight moving between Europe and China. Since 2013, the border towns of Manzhouli and Erenhot have been transformed into important rail freight hubs.

Inner Mongolia saw the first Europe-China freight train pass through its port in September 2013, while it is now the terminus of seven train routes between west and east. The two main terminals are Manzhouli and Erenhot.

2017 statistics

According to a Xinhua report, a total of 654 freight trains headed for Europe or China passed through Manzhouli during the first half of this year, a 33,2 per cent increase compared to the same period last year. In the same period the number of freight trains on the Europe-China route passing through Erenhot was 193, over three times the number in the same period of 2016.

Inner Mongolia has been included in the Belt and Road Initiative by China as part of the China-Mongolia-Russia Economic Corridor. This plan includes but is not limited to the development of an infrastructure between the countries. Trade will be enhanced and economic development accelerated. The three countries greatly depend on each other in terms of import and export.

Author: Majorie van Leijen

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

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