Freight train X9081 heading for Kazakhstan's Almaty is ready to leave a major logistics center in Urumqi, capital of northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, Xinhua/Zhao Ge
Beijing – A new freight train service started on Friday linking the east China port city of Xiamen with Moscow, making it the newest China-Europe freight train route.

At 9.30am, the train with 40 containers left the station from Xiamen Free Trade Zone, carrying goods worth $363 000 (R4.753 million) including granite, lighting supplies, artificial flowers and shoes for Moscow.

A single trip on the 10 920km route takes 13 to 14 days.

Without the direct train service, it used to take at least 25 days to transport goods.

The train route connects the east and northeast Chinese cities of Nanchang, Nanjing, Jinan and Jinzhou, and crosses the border via Manzhouli Port in north China’s Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region.

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Jiang Jingdong, assistant general manager of Xiamen Haicang Free Trade Port Zone Investment and Construction Management, said the service is still in trial operations with three trips from Xiamen to Moscow per month.