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10 July 2015

First direct freight train from China arrives in Gomel

GOMEL, 10 July (BelTA) – A freight train arrived in Gomel on 9 July directly from the Chinese port of Yingkou, BelTA has learned.

The train delivered 40 freight containers that contained components for the first stage of the papermaking machine ordered by the Dobrush-based paper mill. GomelZhelDorTrans Company will take care of accepting the cargo and delivering it to the construction site.

According to Boleslav Pirshtuk, Gomel Oblast Vice Governor, who took part in the train's welcoming ceremony, it was an important event for the Gomel Oblast economy. "First, a container train arrived in Belarus directly from China. Second, the train spent little time to deliver the cargo for invigorating the construction of the cardboard mill by a Chinese company. Third, a precedent has been created and can be repeated many times in the future for the sake of delivering cargoes by land from China to Gomel and other Belarusian cities," said the official.

The train travelled for nearly 9,000km within less than two weeks. Delivering the cargo by sea and then by land from a Baltic Sea port would have taken at least six weeks. Certainly, shipping cargoes by rail costs more than by sea but in this case the supplier was more concerned about the "time is money" factor. A regular train service from Yingkou to Gomel and Dobrush is supposed to be arranged within the next few months. The transportation of the equipment the cardboard factory needs will require 600-700 containers.

Boleslav Pirshtuk told media that in essence the train travelled the way of the Great Silk Road. "During a recent meeting of the leaders of Belarus and China in Minsk it was stated that our country will become part of this global transport corridor. We would not like Gomel Oblast to be left out of the project," stressed the deputy head of the Gomel Oblast administration.

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