S.Korean firms benefiting from B&R initiative

By Dong Feng Source:Global Times Published: 2017/12/13 21:58:40

Initiative widens export options: expert

South Korea has benefited from the Belt and Road (B&R) initiative thanks to increased exports and greater access to the Asian and European markets, an expert told the Global Times on Wednesday.

The comment came after two South Korean companies reportedly reached an agreement on Tuesday to export goods to the European market.

Hyundai Merchant Marine (HMM) and SJ Logistics have forged a partnership to expand in Central Asia and Eastern Europe and will work with China Railway Express (CRE) to transport cargo directly to Europe, Yonhap News Agency reported on Tuesday.

The two companies didn't comment as of press time.

The new transportation service will cut the shipment time from South Korea to Poland to between 18 and 23 days.

South Korean goods being exported to Europe also use the Trans-Siberian Railway (TSR), which takes 30 to 35 days to reach Moscow, news site guancha.cn reported on Tuesday.

The B&R initiative is enabling South Korean companies to save time and cut costs, said Xu Liping, a senior research fellow at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences.

At the launch of the initiative, South Korea did not offer that much support for it, but the country has started to recognize the opportunities it offers, Xu told the Global Times on Wednesday.

Services offered by CRE have been another beneficial factor, Xu said on Wednesday, with "more trains scheduled in the system."

As of December 4, CRE has opened 11 international routes since 2013, according to a post on the website of the Sichuan provincial government.

As neighboring countries, South Korea and China are dependent on each other in terms of trade and economic ties, as well as jointly serving third-party markets, he noted.

In the first half of this year, South Korean commodities have already been shipped to Southwest China's Chongqing, and then exported to Singapore, Xu said.

Posted in: ECONOMY

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