LONDON: January 18, 2017. As projected by Brunel Project Cargo on December 30*, the first container train between China and the UK has now arrived at Deutsche Bahn's London terminal in Barking, Essex.
The train, operated by the InterRail Group on behalf of China Railway International Multimodal Transport, took 18 days to travel the 12,000 kilometers from Yiwu in China's eastern province of Zhejiang.
DB Cargo was responsible for the final leg between its Duisburg terminal and London. This required re-stuffing the train that carried textiles and consumer goods into 34 40ft containers approved for a Channel Tunnel transit, as well providing the diesel-powered traction.
The UK is the latest destination for the InterRail Group link between China and Europe that also includes Duisburg, Madrid, Afghanistan and Riga.
DB began working with other national rail partners in 2011 to operate weekly container trains on the world's longest rail line that now links Duisburg and Hamburg to Wuhan, Chongqing, Harbin and Hefei.
Last year 40,000 containers travelled between China and Europe and despite the multiple loading and unloading due to gauge changes along the route, DB said it expected the number to rise to 100,000 by 2020.