Asean Express completes first Malaysia-China rail cargo trip

  • Nation
  • Thursday, 11 Jul 2024

PETALING JAYA: The cargo train connecting Malaysia, Thailand, Laos, and China, known as the Asean Express, has returned to Malaysia after a 14-day trip to Chongqing, China.

The train was welcomed at its final stop at Kontena Nasional Inland Clearance Depot (KNICD) at 11am on Thursday (July 11).

This marks the first completed trip of the Asean Express to Malaysia. The train, carrying 20 wagons of 40m containers, started its journey on June 27.

On its inbound journey, the train carried sodium sulfate from China, which will be used to make detergents. During its outbound journey, the train transported food products to Thanaleng, Laos, and China.

“This is the first inbound trip; we hope that there will be more trips between the countries,” said Keretapi Tanah Melayu Bh (KTMB) chief operating officer Mohd Zain Mat Taha.

He noted that the trip one-way takes about nine days and crosses through Thailand, Laos, and then to China.

The schedule for the next cargo train and its frequency is unconfirmed. However, KTMB corporate planning head Abdul Salim Shah Abdul Aziz said that they currently expect about two to three trips a month.

As the service grows, the aim is to run daily trains, he added.

The Asean Express is expected to boost trade connectivity between Malaysia, Thailand, Laos, and China as it is a faster mode of transportation, taking nine days for goods to reach China compared to 14 to 21 days by sea.

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