The General Administration of Customs issued 10 measures to support the development of China-Europe freight train service, stabilize trade growth and help work resumption at export-oriented firms amid the coronavirus outbreak.
In addition to conducting quarantine process at ports of entry as required, companies can choose to go through customs clearance procedures for China-Europe rail service at the port of entry or exit, or choose to go through relevant procedures at the places where they are located, per a statement unveiled by the administration on Feb 25.
The GAC will support related parties with surging rail transportation demand by building hubs along rail routes, and will help them carry out cargo grouping operations and domestic and foreign goods mixing and transportation at customs-supervised operating sites to further optimize operational capacity on the transcontinental railroad.
Customs will promote the development of multimodal transport business and other activities, using rail to strengthen the connection between China-Europe train services and international maritime trade channels.
China will continue to deepen its cooperation with related parties to promote the role of Authorized Economic Operator agreements and other policy tools to boost trade activities between China and Europe via rail, help companies to resolve issues in both export and import and encourage more companies from economies related to the Belt and Road Initiative to join AEO certification programs, according to the statement.
The program was advocated by the World Customs Organization for strengthening international supply chain security and facilitating movement of legitimate goods. Under the program, customs bureaus from various regions form partnerships with the industry to collaboratively reduce barriers to customs procedures in order to enhance international trade efficiency.
China has signed the most AEO agreements in the world to facilitate customs clearance for enterprises.
The China-Europe rail service has developed rapidly since it started operations, with the amount of freight train service rising 29 percent year-on-year to 8,225 trips in 2019, according to data released by Xinhua News Agency.
The cross-border rail network had connected 62 Chinese cities, including Chengdu, Zhengzhou and Wuhan, with 51 European cities such as Duisberg, Lodz and Antwerp, in 15 countries by the first half of last year.
Source: China Daily