Shandong launches freight train service to Laos

(| Updated : 2021-12-10

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The Qilu China-Laos international freight train made its first trip on Dec 9, departing from the Qingdao Multimodal Transport Center in the China-SCO demonstration zone for Vientiane, the Laotian capital.


A freight train loaded with goods departs from Qingdao, Shandong province, to Vientiane, the Laotian capital, on Dec 9. [Photo/Dazhong News]

The train, carrying 50 standard containers of goods such as steel, tires, auto parts and daily necessities, will leave China via the border town of Mohan in Yunnan province. It is expected to arrive in Vientiane after about seven days.

The Qilu China-Laos international freight train services provide a new channel for international economic and trade exchanges between Shandong and Southeast Asia, said Shandong officials.

The 1,035-kilometer China-Laos Railway, which opened to traffic on Dec 3, runs between Kunming, capital of Yunnan province, and Vientiane, capital of Laos.

The line, which has a top speed of 200 kilometers per hour, has 50 stations.


A launch ceremony is held on Dec 9 for the first trip of Qilu China-Laos international freight train. [Photo/Dazhong News]

It is the first overseas railway project that is mainly invested, constructed and operated by China and linked to China's rail system.

The first railway in landlocked Laos has garnered positive headlines and has been warmly received by people from both nations. It is also a major logistics channel between RCEP members and a new economic link connecting China and ASEAN.

The Qilu China-Laos international freight train, operated by the Shandong Hi-Speed Group, will build a channel for Shandong to expand business ties with Japan, South Korea, and ASEAN, and contribute to the province's efforts in expanding opening-up, said Shandong officials.

From January to November this year, Qilu international freight trains had made 1,597 trips, up 16.3 percent year-on-year, connecting Shandong with 53 cities in 23 countries involved in the Belt and Road Initiative.