NANJING, Nov. 28 (Xinhua) -- A new freight train route was launched on Saturday to link Hamburg in Germany and Xuzhou, an industrial and transportation hub in east China, amid strengthened China-Europe rail links after the COVID-19 pandemic disrupted sea and air traffic.
A train loaded with machinery parts and epidemic prevention supplies departed from Xuzhou on Saturday morning. It is the first China-Europe freight train the city in Jiangsu Province has sent to Germany, according to the China Railway Shanghai Group Co., Ltd.
Traveling more than 10,000 km, the train will pass through Kazakhstan, Russia, Belarus, and Poland and is expected to reach Hamburg in 15 days, the company said.
Officials said the number of China-Europe freight trains Xuzhou has sent this year is close to the sum of the past five years, indicating the city's enhanced logistics capacity and the strong import demands in the Yangtze River Delta region.
China-Europe freight train services have gained popularity during the pandemic thanks to their low prices, large transportation capacity, and high stability, helping stabilize the international industrial chain and support the efforts of both Europe and Asia to contain the epidemic and resume production.
As of Nov. 5, the number of China-Europe freight trains hit a record high of 10,180 this year, according to data from the China State Railway Group Co., Ltd.