Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Another Intercontinental Rail Freight Route Opens

Inaugural Run for China/Spain Service
Shipping News Feature

CHINA – SPAIN – Having covered the approximately 13,000 kilometres between China and Spain, the first freight train to directly link the two countries has arrived at its final destination in Madrid after completing the test run of a planned regular service which would become the longest railway route in the world. Laden with over 1,400 tonnes of goods, the train took around 21 days to reach Adif’s Madrid Abroñigal railway logistics terminal in Spain, where it will now prepare for the return leg, carrying some of Spain’s more famous exports including wine, olive oil and cured ham.

This test train, which started its journey on November 18 in Yiwu, on the east coast of China, crossed Kazakhstan, Russia, Belarus, Poland, Germany, and France before reaching the Spanish capital, on December 8, where the train, called Yixinou (contraction in Mandarin Yiwu, Xinjiang and Europe) unloaded the remaining 30 containers of the 40 with which it began its journey.

The service was operated by InterRail Services and DB Schenker Rail, with Schenker's Spanish subsidiary Transfesa assisting on the final leg to Madrid. At around 13,052 kilometres, this route between Yiwu and Madrid surpasses that of the Trans-Siberian railway linking Moscow to Vladivostok.