CHANGCHUN, China, Dec. 20, 2017 — As an important route serving China's strategic plan on the Changchun-Jilin-Tumen Development Pilot Zone, the railway linking Hunchun in northeast China's Jilin Province and Makhalino in Russia saw a freight volume of 1.66 million tonnes in the first half of 2017, up 49 percent year-on-year.
International freight trains from Changchun, provincial capital of Jilin, to Europe via Manzhouli, a land port in north China's Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region, has 80 sites for handling goods along their stretches in Russia, directly linking to 18 key railway stations in six European countries. The cargo volume has tripled that of such trains last year, and the growth ranks first among China-European freight trains.
Approved by the Chinese government in 2009, the Changchun-Jilin-Tumen Development Pilot Zone plays a vital role in China's participation in the international cooperation along the Tumen River, through the integrated development of Changchun, Jilin City and the Korean Autonomous Prefecture of Yanbian in the province. The pilot zone covers an area of 30,000 square kilometers and has a population of 7.7 million.
The pilot zone aims to further open up and attaches equal importance to domestic and international cooperation. It is a key supporting area for the China–Mongolia–Russia economic corridor under the Belt and Road Initiative, a core area for regional cooperation in Northeast Asia and a demonstration area for opening up in northeast China.
A planned major international road, starting with Hunchun, passes Changchun, Choibalsan of Mongolia and Russia before extending to European countries. The passageway will be connected with the land Silk Road. With Hunchun a starting point, Jilin Province is also connected with the maritime Silk Road through Russia's Zarubino Port, Rajin and Chongjin ports of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK).
A joint land and sea transportation line from Hunchun to Busan Port of the Republic of Korea is in stable operation. A cross-border passageway from Hunchun to south China coastal cities via DPRK ports has been approved and realized two-way shipping of containers.
The pilot zone has expanded its economic impact via the construction of various development areas.
The export-oriented economy of Jilin has achieved rapid growth. International logistics, tourism, overseas resource processing and border trade have boomed.
In 2016, foreign trade in Jilin hit 121.7 billion yuan, up 3.8 percent year-on-year, or 4.7 percentage points higher than the national level. In the first half of 2017, border trade in Jilin almost quadrupled to hit 70 million U.S. dollars.
SOURCE Changchun-Jilin-Tumen Development Pilot Zone
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