China remains one of the most important markets for DHL Express, and the company will pursue long-term development in the second largest economy, John Pearson, global CEO of DHL Express, told Xinhua in a recent interview.
“DHL Global Forwarding, Freight embarked on laying plans and exploring the rail freight market in China in 2008 and joined the BRI (the Belt and Road Initiative) in 2013, having conducted in-depth cooperation with a number of railway operators, such as the China-Europe Railway Express with a service network fully covering Eurasia,” said Pearson.
DHL Express, as well as DHL Global Forwarding, Freight, are subsidiaries of the Bonn-based Deutsche Post DHL Group, which Pearson said is the first major international express company that entered the Chinese market.
“In the past 35 years, DHL has made an investment of over 10 billion yuan (1.57 billion U.S. dollars) and built up a vast logistics network in China,” he said.
Referring to China’s continued efforts to provide more extensive market opportunities to foreign companies, he said, “This further strengthens our confidence and determination to pursue long-term development in China.”
Moreover, the Chinese government has made commitments to peaking carbon dioxide emissions by 2030 and realizing carbon neutrality by 2060, which meshed with the Deutsche Post DHL Group’s pledge to reach “zero emission logistics by 2050,” said Pearson.
“The group further announced to invest 7 billion euros (7.91 billion dollars) in the next 10 years to accelerate decarbonization,” he added.
The CEO said that as of year to date, DHL Express has invested nearly 200 million yuan (31.40 million dollars) in China to improve the infrastructure of ground networks and services, including “electrifying the cargo van fleet, optimizing facilities and service centers with energy-saving and low-carbon technologies.”
Noting the impact on the supply chain caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, Pearson said the pandemic has “revealed the criticality of logistics in keeping supply chains running,” adding that overall supply chains have proven to “be very resilient and global flow patterns show no evidence of a major shift from global to regional trade.”
“One of the key changes has been the positive impact of digitization which leapfrogged as a consequence of the pandemic,” he said, adding that the current challenging environment continues to act as an “accelerator for digitization” and the systematic digitalization throughout businesses acts as “a lever for achieving significant progress.”
As for China’s economy and global recovery from the pandemic, Pearson said: “China remains one of the vital engines to the world economy recovery, and continues to post a steady recovery and growth itself.”
Speaking of China’s “dual circulation” development pattern, which takes the domestic market as the mainstay while letting internal and external markets boost each other, Pearson said, “We have seen China’s foreign trade maintain the momentum of growth this year, thanks to the recovering global economy and trade that spurs more demand for commodities from China, as well as the stable industrial chains in China.”
“Also, Chinese cross-border e-commerce has seen robust growth and B2B (business to business) accounts for the majority of cross-border e-commerce export in China,” he said, as the Chinese government has introduced “a series of favorable policies to further support its development in the future.”
“That said, China continues to play a key role in contributing to global trade flow and economy recovery,” Pearson said.