China-Europe freight train (Chongqing)’s 10,000th trip arrives in Duisburg, Germany
(Photo: Xinhua News)

A freight train loaded with electronic products, mechanical parts and daily necessities, which departed from southwest China’s Chongqing Municipality on June 23, arrived in Duisburg, Germany on Monday. This marked the 10,000th trip made by China-Europe freight trains operated by the China-Europe Railway Express (Chongqing), the first of its kind in China.

Du Chunguo, the Chinese Consul General in Dusseldorf, Markus Teuber, commissioner for China affairs of the Mayor’s Office of Duisburg, and Duisport CEO Markus Bangen attended a welcome ceremony held in Duisburg Monday afternoon.

This is a milestone for the China-Europe freight train services, and a fresh starting point for the new journey of common development in Eurasia, Du said in his welcoming speech.

This year marks the 50th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and Germany.

Du said that the annual trade volume was less than 300 million U.S. dollars between the two countries 50 years ago, “now it takes just 12 hours on average to accomplish.”

Markus Bangen said that Germany and China have extensive economic cooperation, and the past 50 years have witnessed successful cooperation between the two which benefits both. “We look forward to more cooperations in the future.”

The city of Duisburg spreads along both sides of the Rhine and Ruhr in western Germany. As one of the destinations for China-Europe freight trains, Duisburg functions as a hub that reaches other parts of Europe in less time.

In an interview with Xinhua earlier this year, Markus Teuber said it was “a big advantage” to have the fast connection between China and Duisburg.

“The meaning extended in the last 10 years of course,” he said. “(Receiving) 60 trains per week was important for the port and also for the city, because a lot of Chinese companies decided to invest in Duisburg, e-commerce companies, logistics companies, and also the terminals,” said Teuber in the interview.

The China-Europe Railway Express (Chongqing), launched in March 2011, has witnessed the transportation of over 1,000 types of goods ranging from smart terminals and whole vehicles to auto parts and medicines, with a total value exceeding 400 billion yuan (about 60 billion U.S. dollars).

The China-Europe Railway Express (Chongqing) now operates nearly 40 routes reaching about 100 cities in Asia and Europe.

In 2021, the China-Europe freight train services saw rapid growth amid safe and smooth operation, with the number of trips hitting 15,000 last year, according to China State Railway Group Co., Ltd.