Between 12 and 14 October 2016, the largest logistics and transport fair in the region, CILF (China International Logistics and Transportation Fair), was held in Shenzhen, Guangdong Province, in southern China. It was the eleventh edition of the event. The format of the event was dedicated to logistics and the supply chain, ports and navigation, passenger transport, and rail transport, including intermodal transport.
The choice of the location of the fair was not accidental, as Shenzhen is one of the largest economic and financial centres in south-eastern China, directly bordering on Hong Kong and boasting highly developed industry, including IT, electronic, food, chemical, textile, and engineering industries. This is also where the so-called New Silk Road begins, the aim of which is to intensify trade between China and Europe.
The Port of Gdansk is, in turn, a transport hub where nearly 40% of goods from foreign trade between Poland and China is handled annually. This is why Gdansk could not miss the opportunity to take part in the event. The port presented its stand at the fair for the first time in this part of the world, next to European ports such as Hamburg, Rotterdam and Gothenburg.
Gdansk’s presence was also recognised by the local Chinese authorities, organisers of the fair, as on the first day of the fair, the Port of Gdansk’s stand was visited by Mr. Dong Yanze, vice-president of the Shenzhen Chinese transport committee, along with a crowd of Chinese media representatives.
However, the fair was not the only reason for the Port of Gdansk’s visit to China. On 13 October, the Port of Gdansk and the largest port in the Guangdong Province, the Port of Guangzhou, signed a letter of intent, in which they undertake to strengthen relations in order to increase Polish-Chinese trade as part of the One Belt, One Road initiative, aimed at reviving the Silk Road – a strategic Chinese economic project.
The Port of Guangzhou is currently the largest multi-purpose port in southern China, a transport hub for nearby provinces, including Guangxi, Yunnan, Guizhou, Sichuan, Hunan, Hubei and Jiangxi. Goods such as fuel products, coal, cereals, chemicals, including fertilisers, steel, metal ores, automotive products and containers are handled on the port’s quays.
The letter of intent signed will serve the exchange of experience and mutual promotion of the port centres. It will also constitute a foundation for introducing specific cooperation projects oriented at Polish-Chinese transport exchange via the Port of Gdansk and the Port of Guangzhou.
This is the second letter of intent within only the last 4 months signed by the Port of Gdansk with the Chinese side, which confirms that, on the map of the New Silk Road, the Chinese concept of a new trade route connecting Asia and Europe, Poland plays a very important role in “the sixteen”, i.e. the group of Central and Eastern European Countries situated along the Silk Road.
Within the last 7 years alone, the exchange of goods between Poland and China increased by 50%. Meanwhile, the Chinese side focuses its attention mainly on large exchange partners, and from this perspective, among the entire sixteen, Poland is beginning to play a major role. The Polish market is one of the larger ones in Europe, providing access to a broad spectrum of consumers and a large group of Polish producers.
The Polish food, electronic, automotive and household appliance industries enjoy particular interest among the Chinese.
rel (Port of Gdansk)