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State logistics firm helps in world virus fight

By ZHONG NAN | China Daily | Updated: 2020-05-29 09:34
Crew of the MV. Yuan Jian Hai, a dry bulk carrier owned by China COSCO Shipping Corp, handle engineering equipment in the vessel's engine room in early April. [Photo provided to China Daily]

China COSCO Shipping playing vital role in fixing industrial, supply chains

With its vessels having delivered many batches of aircraft components from Germany to Airbus SE's Tianjin plant, medical supplies from China to countries including Italy, Greece and Uruguay, and frozen pork from Canada to Shanghai so far this year, China COSCO Shipping Corp has been rushing to fix and prevent disruptions to the world's industrial and supply chains caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Shanghai-based group has been helping other centrally-administrated State-owned enterprises including China National Chemical Engineering Co, China Railway Rolling Stock Corp and Aluminum Corporation of China to either export their chemical goods and trains or import commodities from countries including Saudi Arabia, India, Indonesia, Vietnam, Thailand, Turkey and Guinea in the first four months of the year.

"As a key player in the global shipping business, we have taken more than 80 targeted measures and responded to the new situation in a flexible way to ensure the smooth operation of domestic companies' overseas projects, international production capacity cooperation and the timely export of goods since the pandemic broke out," said Xu Lirong, chairman of China COSCO Shipping, the world's largest shipping company by fleet size.

Apart from assisting domestic companies from both private and SOE sectors in stabilizing their supply chains, the company also delivered key components for the production of A320 aircraft by Airbus in the Tianjin Binhai New Area in mid-April amid the closure of many overland routes.

Facing the outbreak of COVID-19, Xu said the group's global team in charge of this project has focused on epidemic control and operation, ensuring a smooth international supply chain for the Airbus project. Beginning in June 2008, the Chinese firm has undertaken the entire logistics transportation process for the European aircraft maker's final assembly plant in Tianjin.

Despite the outbreak generating a number of uncertainties in global trade and logistics activities beginning in January, the group's European branch has maintained close contact with the representative office of the China (Tianjin) Port Free Trade Zone's administrative committee in Europe and Airbus' Hamburg, Germany plant to ensure safe and smooth operations in Europe.

To complete the work, China COSCO Shipping secured a stable line to and from Europe within which key components are shipped and punctuality and delivery guaranteed to meet client requirements to push forward the entire logistics transportation plan.

China COSCO Shipping delivered components of 25 aircraft from Europe to China between Jan 24 and mid-May, thus helping maintaining the global logistics supply chain for the Airbus project.

Xi Jinping, general secretary of the Communist Party of China Central Committee, chaired a leadership meeting on the effective implementation of regular epidemic prevention and control measures on May 14.

The meeting of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee also studied measures to boost the stability and competitiveness of industrial and supply chains.

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