World focus

China on track for rail boom

The Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) has seen a boost in rail freight to Europe, with Zhengzhou, in Henan province, a beneficiary of this. But analysts are divided on how sustainable such growth is

Every week, eight cargo trains loaded with China-made electronic devices from smartphones and laptops to television sets pull out of Zhengzhou's railway station. Their destination - Hamburg and Munich, some 10,000km away.

When the trains head back to the central Chinese city, their cars are without fail laden with European foodstuff such as cheese, Polish chocolates, Spanish olive oil and Italian pasta.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on June 19, 2018, with the headline 'China on track for rail boom'. Print Edition | Subscribe