The role of Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region as a Belt and Road Portal has increased with the accelerated construction of the New International Land-Sea Trade Corridor.

Yunnan, Sichuan, Chongqing and Guizhou enterprises exported a total of 21.4 billion yuan ($3 billion) worth of products via Guangxi in 2018, up 62 percent from the previous year. Imports via Guangxi also increased by 13.1 percent to 20.29 billion yuan, according to statistics from Nanning Customs.

Fertiliser and electro-mechanical products topped the export list, with the ASEAN, India, and Australia being the largest export destinations. The major import markets were Latin America, Middle East, and Africa, as well as other resource-rich regions.

Nearly half of exports and imports were shipped via Fangchenggang Port, 15.5 percent were shipped via the Qinzhou Free Trade Port Area, and 15 percent were shipped via Friendship Pass, a border Port in Pingxiang.

In recent years, Guangxi has committed to developing a sea-rail intermodal Transport system to facilitate trade with countries along the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road. Qinzhou Port alone operates eight freight train routes to Southwest cities and 39 shipping routes to more than 50 domestic and foreign ports.

A cross-border highway-railway passage has also been envisioned that connects Guiyang, Chongqing, Chengdu, Xi’an, Lanzhou and Urumchi in the north via high-speed railways, and connects Southeast Asia in the south via land routes.