New Shandong-Europe express links China and Hamburg


The new Shandong-Europe Express train from Jinan arrived in Hamburg’s Billwerder Terminal for the first time on 30 April.

It carried valuable and time-sensitive cargo from China to Europe along the New Silk Road, according to a statement from the Port of Hamburg.

“Hamburg is not only a hub for ocean shipping with China, but also an important junction for rail traffic between Europe and China on the New Silk Road,” Axel Mattern, Executive Board Member of Port of Hamburg Marketing stated.

China is the Port of Hamburg’s most important trade partner. Hamburg serves as one of the the gateways to Europe for Chinese goods.

The Port of Hamburg has a throughput of about 2.6 million TEU of seaborne containers for China annually. Almost every third container handled on the quays there is coming from or headed to China.

On April 10, the “Shandong-Europe Express” set out from Jinan, the capital of Shandong Province, on its way to Hamburg.

The train was loaded with 41 40-foot containers (FEU) filled with wind turbine parts, LEDs, tools, and medical supplies.

Hamburg’s Senator for Economics, Michael Westhagemann added: “I’m very pleased to see that we are able to improve the connections between Hamburg and China even further.

“Landside connections, particularly transport by rail, provide the Port of Hamburg with great opportunities and are one of its strengths: 12% of German rail cargo transport arrives at or departs from the Port of Hamburg.

“This puts us in an excellent starting position to make good use of this strength in a sustainable way on the Silk Road in the future.”

Currently, train only operates from China to Europe. Carriage in the other direction is not being offered at this time. The next departures from Jinan are scheduled for May 16 and 30. The freight train is operated by the Shandong Hi-Speed Group as part of their Qilu Europe-Asia freight traffic service.

“The Shandong Express arrived [30 April]  in Hamburg in the midst of the coronavirus crisis. It is a powerful sign in trying times for all of us. We can only overcome the coronavirus by working together. We can only meet the challenges during and after the crisis by working together. We can only manage it together,” Chinese Consul General DU Xiaohui emphasized at the train’s arrival.

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