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Bridge a boon for cargo shipments

By QIU QUANLIN in Guangzhou | CHINA DAILY | Updated: 2024-05-10 09:46
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The Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge has emerged as a vital trade artery, witnessing a surge in cross-border cargo movement in recent years.

That growth has been attributed to streamlined customs clearance procedures, efficient logistics, and policies promoting regional connectivity.

Since its opening in 2018, the bridge has become a regular route for cargo trucks carrying a diverse range of goods. From high-tech products to everyday supplies for residents in Hong Kong and Macao, the bridge facilitates the seamless flow of commerce between Guangdong province and the two special administrative regions.

Over the past five years, more than 1.91 million cargo trucks have traversed the bridge via the Zhuhai port. In the first four months of this year, 184,900 cargo trucks crossed the bridge, up by more than 21 percent year-on-year and more than seven times the number in the same period in 2019.

Border inspection authorities on the bridge have been processing an average of 69,900 inbound and outbound travelers a day this year, 56 percent more than last year, with more than 60 percent of them residents of Hong Kong or Macao.

To adapt to the increasing number of vehicles using the bridge, border inspection authorities have been continuously innovating management practices to facilitate customs clearance.

They have been promoting data sharing and collaboration and simplifying immigration registration procedures. For drivers who have already completed the "one-stop" immigration registration or the fast-track passenger registration, the system automatically shares information, providing a paperless electronic service.

The immigration inspection system for the 44 lanes of passenger vehicles at the Zhuhai port has undergone multiple optimizations and upgrades, leading to an increase in the maximum hourly throughput of passenger cars at the port from 440 vehicles to 1,100 vehicles.

The bridge's 24-hour customs clearance offers a distinct advantage for companies like Far East Facade (Zhuhai). Since relocating its factory to Zhuhai after the bridge's opening, the company has leveraged the efficient clearance system to transport glass curtain wall products to Hong Kong market in just three hours. Last year, the value of the company's shipments rose 115 percent year-on-year.

"We can dispatch 30 to 40 trucks per day," said Wu Maoqing, a manager in charge of customs clearance affairs at Far East Facade. "The efficient customs clearance at the bridge significantly enhances the competitiveness of our company."

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