IRU Beijing to Brussels commercial truck caravan
Beijing – The 3rd Euro-Asian Road Transport Conference of the International Road Transport Union’s (IRU) on the theme “Road Transport, Bridging Europe and Asia” celebrated today the launch of the first ever international commercial truck caravan from Beijing to Brussels.
This pioneering initiative is a response to the real business demand of companies who produce their goods in China to find viable transport alternatives in light of stifling congestion at Chinese ports and dramatically increasing maritime freight rates.
The Caravan will travel with the slogan, “From Beijing to Brussels, road transport drives progress”. The 12â€™000 km journey will include stops in Astana, Moscow, Riga, Vilnius, Warsaw and finally Brussels on 17 October to bring to the attention of political and business decision makers to the fact that road transport can already today offer a viable, cost and time effective transport alternative for the transport of goods produced in China to markets in the EU, CIS, Middle East and American East Coast.
The Caravan is a collaborative effort of IRU’s Member Associations, spearheaded by International Road Transport Carriers’ Union of Kazakhstan (KazATO), and organised with the support of IRU’s Members in China (CRTA), Latvia (LATVIJAS AUTO), Lithuania (LINAVA), Poland (ZMPD) and Russia (ASMAP).
The initiative has already received international praise by the UN Economic Commission for Europe, the UN Economic and Social Commission for the Asia-Pacific region and the US Chamber of Commerce.
In his message to Caravan participants, IRU President Paul Laeremans said: “The aim of this Caravan is to show that freight can be efficiently transported from China to CIS countries and further to the EU within just one-third of the time it would take by sea. This is also an excellent illustration of the fact that road transport is no longer just a means of carriage, but rather, in an increasingly competitive globalised world economy, road transport has become an irreplaceable production tool for all companies and economies.”
At the ceremony to mark the start of the Caravan, the China Road Transport Association President, Yao Mingde said: â€œChinaâ€™s trade with foreign partners is steadily increasing. We should use all modes of transport, including the speedy, reliable, quality services of international road transport carriers to deliver freight from China to all countries of the Euro-Asian land mass. We are confident that the Beijing-Brussels Caravan will prove that commercial road transport is a real and viable option at our hands.â€