FS International Co. Ltd. | China / Hong Kong

Central China transportation hub sees 200 Sino-European freight trains this year Central China’s Wuhan city, a transportation hub, has seen more than 200 Sino-European freight trains so far this year. The trains mostly go to Germany, France and Russia, and the routes connect more than 60 cities in 28 Asian and European countries. Electronic devices, screens, automobile accessories, optical cable, special steel, household electrical appliances as well as chemical and rubber products are among the commodities exported.

Returning trains carry elevator and automobile components and timber to China. With refrigerated containers, the trains also bring back milk from Belarus, edible oil from Kazakhstan, beer from Poland and Germany and wine from France.

By May 13 this year when the 1,000th Sino-European freight train left China, the country had 51 Sino-European freight train routes, with trains from 28 Chinese cities travelling to 29 cities in 11 European countries.

Asia-Europe carriers on track for high volumes and profit ASIA-EUROPE carriers expect a much improved year ahead on the back of rising container volume and European economic growth and firmer freight rates that boost profitability.

The interim results of Orient Overseas Container Line showed a major increase in volume and revenue on Asia-Europe in the first half of the year over the corresponding period in 2016. OOCL reported Asia-Europe volume up 22.2 per cent in the first half to 546,505 TEU, while revenue for the trade was up 48.5 per cent year on year to US$525 million.

OOCL reported the higher volumes as the European economy, driven by strong retail sales and domestic demand, expanded 0.6 per cent in the second quarter from the first, according to IHS Market, which has revised upward its 2017 forecast for Euro zone GDP growth 0.1 percentage point to two per cent. The three Japanese carriers - MOL, NYK Line, and “K” Line - also reported a strong improvement in their financial results as the container shipping business environment strengthened. NYK Line and “K” Line both returned to the black in the first quarter of fiscal 2017 after suffering net losses a year earlier, while MOL saw its net profit quadruple.