DHL Global Forwarding has developed a new door-to-door delivery service between China and Europe – using a transcontinental train link.
The air, sea and road freight vision of Deutsche Post DHL has developed its new service win partnership with rail operator YHF Logistics.
The service uses the new Chengdu to Poland express train operated by YHF Logistics, launched this spring. The 9,826km train journey takes 14 days, but cuts transit time by 40 days compared to ocean freight.
The new route also comes at a sixth the shipping cost of an air freight service.
DHL said its once-a-week service runs through to its intermodal hub in Malaszewicze, Poland, and the company then trucks shipments to Moscow to offer a 20-day transit time between Chengdu and Moscow.
Kelvin Leung, the Asia Pacific CEO for DHL Global Forwarding, conceded that it might seem counter-intuitive to ship freight through Russia to Poland before trucking it back to Moscow.
But he said the route avoids potential problems with the rail network going into Moscow.
“Our innovative multi-modal team has found that mixing the two different modes of rail and truck and taking this route in fact cuts transit time and transport costs significantly by pre-empting and overcoming potential delays that can be encountered when entering Moscow by rail,” he explained.
DHL sees the Chengdu to Poland trade lane as important with China being one of Russia’s top trading partners.
Bilateral trade between the two countries grew 11.2% year-on-year in 2012, to $88.16bn.
DHL has already carried out several trials along its new multimodal route to Moscow for various customers. Its new service is open to businesses in any sector.
Chengdu-based YHF Logistics inaugurated its China to Poland train link at the end of December, with the link running through Western China, Kazakhstan, Russia and Belarus before arriving in Poland.
Regular weekly train services began at the end of April.
Sofiane Rachedi, the YHF Logistics president, said: “We are happy to be DHL’s chosen partner in an ever-changing, challenging and competitive market. As an established leader in freight services in the region, DHL is a reliable partner with business ideals and ideas that we are happy to support and be a part of. We look forward to more innovative ideas on how we can further enable trade between not just the two countries, but the two continents.”
The route of the new Chengdu to Poland China Express Train, and DHL’s onward link to Moscow