A total of 2,158 China-Europe Freight Trains passed through the border port of Erenhot in North China’s Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region in the first 11 months of this year, an increase of 53.4 percent year on year, according to the local railway operator.

Among them, the number of outbound trains during the period was 1,023, up 54.3 percent year on year, while 1,135 inbound trains were recorded, up 52.6 percent, according to the China Railway Hohhot Group.

To better meet the needs of the China-Europe freight train service, Erenhot’s railway department transformed part of its bulk cargo space, which originally handled logs and iron ore, into container reloading areas for the trains. The train reloading and handling capacities have risen by some 30 percent.

Initiated in 2011, the China-Europe cargo rail transport service is considered a significant part of the Belt & Road Initiative to boost trade between China and countries participating in the program. Amid the novel coronavirus pandemic, the service remains a reliable transportation channel.

The Erenhot Port is the largest land port on the border between China and Mongolia. So far, there are 42 routes of China-Europe freight trains via the land port.

Proposed in 2013, the Silk Road Economic Belt and the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road (BRI) aims to build trade and infrastructure networks connecting Asia with Europe and Africa on and beyond the ancient Silk Road routes. Mongolia is one of the Silk Road Economic Belt Countries.