Business / Industries

Freight train opens new opportunities for China-Russia exports

(Xinhua) Updated: 2015-11-27 16:41

HOHHOT - A chartered train carrying Chinese 160 tons of fruit and vegetables to Moscow has passed through China's largest land checkpoint with Russia, in a logistics breakthrough that could greatly boost trade.

After being cleared by customs in Manzhouli of North China's Inner Mongolia autonomous region, the refrigerated train is expected to arrive in Moscow at the beginning of December following a trip lasting 12 to 14 days.

If the cargo sells well in the Russian capital, the checkpoint will provide swift clearance for repeats of the service, said Rong Zibin, chief inspection and quarantine official of Manzhouli, on Friday.

Local supply of fruit and vegetables in Moscow is inadequate in its long winter, creating an export opportunity for Chinese farmers.

The 160 tons of produce was gathered from the Chinese agricultural heartlands of Zhejiang, Fujian and Shandong provinces.

Manzhouli handles 60 percent of China's land freight to Russia. China exports 400,000 tons of fruit and vegetables to Russia through there annually.

It has mainly been carried by lorries destined for Russia's Novosibirsk, a freight hub more than 3,000 km from Moscow. Cargo train trips from Manzhouli to Novosibirsk take 90 hours.

Rong said Chinese logistics firms are keen to invest in more refrigerated train services if there is steady demand in Moscow.

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