PIL slashes Chongqing intermodal transit times


Singapore containership operator Pacific International Lines (PIL) group claims it has reduced transit times to and from the rapidly developing western Chinese metropolis Chongqing by up to 80% with the offering of an alternative gateway option via Qinzhou in Guangxi.

In addition to the usual inland distribution option for Chongqing of barge transport via Shanghai, PIL said customers now had the option “to tap the intermodal expertise offered by PIL, shipping goods to Qinzhou instead of Shanghai and then accessing Chongqing by rail on the Qinzhou railway.” The Qinzhou railway, also known as the Yuguixin railway, began operations in early September.

“With the rail system in place, it takes roughly 48 hours for goods from Chongqing to be shipped out through the Southern China ports, reducing transit time within China by 80%,” PIL said. “Previously, goods from Chongqing have to be transported by barges via the Yangtze River and it would eventually be shipped out from Shanghai. The time taken for the movement of goods within China is approximately two weeks.”

The company said this additional route was “demonstrative of PIL’s wider involvement in the Southern Transport Corridor under China’s Belt and Road Initiative”.

Lisa Teo, executive director for corporate development at PIL, said: “By having such unprecedented access into China and other remote regions of Asia, Europe and Africa, we expect to see heightened levels of cargo flows from previously inaccessible places by ships. Unlike the developed coastal cities, the inland regions of China are largely untapped and their potential growth could represent a new strong and steady source of cargo volume as they continue to develop.”