In a bid to tap into rail connections to the Balkans and central and Eastern Europe, as well as maritime connections to the Suez Canal, Chinese shipping line Cosco is looking to make an offer for TRAINOSE, Greece’s rail network, according to gCaptain.
This follows news that Cosco had remained the sole bidder for a 67% majority stake in Greece’s Piraeus Port.
An unnamed source said: “COSCO and [railroad holding company] Watco are interested in TRAINOSE. There is also a Greek group which is interested and is looking for a partner.”
Frans-Paul van der Putten, Senior Research Fellow at Dutch think-tank Clingendael, said: “Piraeus is already a success. To develop it further, one condition is that the infrastructure connections with other parts of Europe must be developed.”
Jonathan Beard, Vice President at transport consultancy ICF International in Hong Kong, said: “I think any port or related investments around the Mediterranean – not just in Greece but also in Turkey, North Africa and the Black Sea – will be of interest.”
Cosco recently had its merger with China Shipping Container Lines approved by the Chinese state-council, which is due to come into effect on February 18, 2016.
Although it is anticipated to shake up both carriers’ prospective alliances, the new entity is anticipated to go on to become the fourth largest shipping line globally.