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Eurasian Business Briefing Transport, Infrastructure & Logistics

Alibaba to use Silk Road to boost SME trade

Alibaba CEO Jack MaChinese e-commerce giant Alibaba Group is planning to leverage China’s Belt and Road initiative to help the country’s SMEs boost levels of international trade, according to reports in China Daily this week, with CEO Jack Ma urging policy makers and business leaders to create new rules and laws to strengthen trade and development. 
“We have plans (more…)

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First train leaves UK on New Silk Road

London to Yiwu trainThe first ‘Silk Road’ rail freight service from Britain to China pulled out of the DP World London Gateway rail terminal in Essex yesterday laden with pharmaceuticals, whisky, soft drinks, vitamins and baby products at the start of its maiden 18-day 7,500-mile journey to Yiwu in the central province of Zhejiang. After passing through the Channel Tunnel into France and on to Belgium, the train will call in Duisburg, Germany from (more…)

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Indian Railways gives new push to North-South Transport Corridor

Indian RailwaysState-owned Indian Railways is to host a meeting of the heads of its fellow South Asian railway companies next week to discuss the possibility of pushing forward the development a transcontinental rail freight service that would run through Iran and Turkey. If the 6,000 km project were to be realised, (more…)

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EU investigates Chinese plans for Belgrade to Budapest rail link

Belgrade to Piraeus rail linkChina’s plans to build a 350km, $2.89m high-speed railway between Belgrade and Budapest are under investigation by the authorities in Brussels on the grounds that they may fall foul of EU laws which stipulate that transport projects of this magnitude should be put out to public tender.
An MoU (more…)

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Korean consortium on track to win Canakkale Bridge contract

Canakkale Bridge routeTurkey looks set to celebrate the 101st anniversary of the Canakkale War – better known to the rest of the world as the Gallipoli campaign when the Allies of the First World War launched a costly and unsuccessful assault on the Dardanelles – with a ground breaking ceremony to mark the start of construction of the $2.6bn suspension bridge over the Dardanelles Strait, (more…)

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Barking welcomes first direct Silk Road freight train from China to London

Chinese dragon greets china-london freight train 180117A crowd of politicians, journalists and local residents – some dressed up as Chinese dragons – turned up at the Barking Intermodal Terminal in east London yesterday to welcome and watch as the the first ever freight train to come direct from China to the UK arrived, carrying approximately £4m worth of socks, cloth, bags, and household goods.
Yiwu Factory making SantasPulled (more…)

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India looks for $13bn to fund Sagar Mala port upgrade programme

Vibrant GujaratHaving committed itself to spending $180bn to modernise the country’s ports and surrounding infrastructure by way of its Sagar Mala port expansion initiative, the Indian authorities have been wooing visitors at this week’s biennial three-day Vibrant Gujarat investment summit with a series of presentations aimed at raising $13bn to fund (more…)

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Malaysia looks to Strait of Malacca for slice of Maritime Silk Route action

Ships in Strait of MalaccaThe Malaysian government is looking for investors to back its plans to develop a giant new deep-sea port and industrial city at Carey Island, some 70km south west of Kuala Lumpur on the Strait of Malacca, one of the world’s busiest shipping channel – and one which is central to China’s ambitions to develop the Maritime Silk Route Economic Belt.
The port itself (more…)

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London joins New Silk Road

Silk Road TrainNew Silk Road: London is set to become the latest and 15th European city to feel the impact of Chinese plans to create a 21st-century equivalent of the ancient Silk Road trade route later this month after the China Railway Corporation announced that it had launched the first direct rail freight service to the UK’s capital from Yiwu West Railway Station in Zhejiang Province. Carrying (more…)

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Erdogan opens Eurasia Tunnel but what next for other mega projects?

Erdogan opens Eurasia TunnelWith a third bridge across the Bosphorus already completed last summer and this week’s opening of the $1.2bn Eurasia Tunnel expected to cut the journey time between the Asian and European sections of the city from over an hour and a half down to 15 minutes, Recep Tayyip Erdogan appears to be on track to honour his pre-election pledge (more…)

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Obama hits Trump with new Russian sanctions and Arctic drilling ban

Navy Day Parade SevastopolOutgoing US President Barack Obama this week did his best to thwart his successor Donald Trump’s plans to improve relations with Moscow and to increase US oil and gas production by extending the sanctions imposed on Russia over its 2014 annexation of Crimea while almost simultaneously withdrawing (more…)

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Evraz considers offers for Nakhodka Sea Port in effort to reduce debts

Nakhodka Sea PortIn an attempt to reduce its mounting debts, the Russian steel and mining conglomerate EVRAZ has put its facilities at the Far Eastern Nakhodka Trade Sea Port up for sale, it was reported yesterday, and has already received offers from around a dozen Russian, Kazakh and Chinese companies. The company has valued the port at $260m.
NakhodkaFounded in 1947 in Nakhodka Bay some 200km south-east of Vladivostok, the port is on one of the easternmost spurs of the Trans Siberian railway and as such is a key staging post for the movement of goods between Asia and Europe. It has the capacity to unload up to 500 rail wagons a day; each of its 16 berths can accommodate vessels of up to 230m in length and 32m in width; and it comes with 300,000m² of warehousing premises. Last year, the port handled 9.2m tons of cargo.
Chinese steel millAn integrated steel, mining and vanadium business with operations in the Russian Federation, Ukraine, USA, Canada, Czech Republic, Italy, Kazakhstan and South Africa, the LSE-listed EVRAZ is among the top steel producers in the world, but has been hit by the collapse in the price of steel, largely caused by Chinese over-production. Earlier this year it announced that it was planning to reduce its debt by as much as $1.5bn, but at the time ruled out the possibility of selling off any of its assets. 

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First convoy arrives in Gwadar down China-Pakistan Economic Corridor

Pakistan PM Nawaz Sharif and Army Chief General Raheel Sharif at CPEC inauguration Gwadar 13-11-16China-Pakistan Economic Corridor: Pakistani’s Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and China’s Ambassador to Pakistan Sun Weeding joined other senior officials from both countries this week at the Arabian Sea port of Gwadar to watch as the first containers full of Chinese goods arrived for loading onto two ships – also Chinese – for export by way of the nascent China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). The trade convoy (more…)

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German consortium ready to fund Moscow-Kazan high-speed railway

Moscow to Kazan High Speed Train Moscow-Kazan high-speed railway: The German Initiative consortium, whose members include Siemens, Deutsche Bank, Deutsche Bahn is getting ready to put around €2.7bn behind the Moscow-Kazan high speed railroad project, (more…)

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Kazakhstan to increase Silk Road container capacity tenfold by 2020

Minister of Investment and Development Zhenis KassymbekKazakhstan has signed up to increase the volume of container shipments that it processes on the new Silk Road between China and Europe from a current yearly total of 70,000 this year to 800,000 by the end of the decade, (more…)

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Deutsche Bahn agrees to test drive new South West transport corridor to Iran

Deutsche BahnDeutsche Bahn, one of the world’s largest transport companies, has agreed to test drive the new South West Transport Corridor linking India, Iran and other Gulf states to Europeby the end of November. (more…)

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CPEC expected to boost GDP growth to 7.5%, claims new report

CPECThe China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) will create more than two million jobs and take Pakistan’s GDP growth rate up to 7.5%, according to a report from the US-based consulting firm Deloitte Touche. The report’s authors claim (more…)

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South Korea agrees to build $350m terminal for Tashkent airport

Tashkent airport: The South Korean government yesterday agreed to invest $250m in the construction of a new terminal (more…)

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Swiss win Aprin dry port contract as Iran’s non-oil exports boom

North_South_Transport_Corridor_(NSTC) (1)Aprin dry port: The Swiss-based transport and logistics multinational Transinvest Holdings has signed a 25-year contract with Iran’s Perse Transport Bar for the development of a 700-ha dry port some 20 km south of Tehran. On completion, (more…)

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Alrosa launches Eurasian Diamond Centre in Vladivostok as Eastern Economic Forum gets under way

Eastern Economic Forum VladivostokAlrosa, Russia’s largest diamond mining operation, launched the Eurasian Diamond Centre in Vladivostok yesterday to coincide with the opening of the second Eastern Economic Forum tomorrow, when representatives from more than 200 (more…)

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