Brunei launches 1st direct container shipping route to China

In the file photo, a 32,000-ton maximum capacity cargo ship from the Sudan-China Express leaves the Red Sea Sudan Harbor for Qingdao harbor in China's Shandong province. (Xinhua)

BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN, (Xinhua) -- Brunei opened a container shipping route between Muara Port, its sole deep-water port, and Beibu Gulf Port in south China's Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, marking the first such route between the Southeast Asian country and China.

At the ceremony to launch the maiden container ship voyage on the route, Haji Mohd Amin Liew, Brunei's minister at the Prime Minister's office and second minister of finance and economy, said the new container shipping line is crucial to the development of the Brunei economy and to the Brunei Darussalam-Indonesia-Malaysia-Philippines East ASEAN Growth Area (BIMP-EAGA) as it will facilitate import and export, and open new markets.

Cai Lixin, visiting vice governor of Guangxi, said opening the new route is an important event in strengthening China's cooperation with the BIMP-EAGA region and for speeding up the construction of the New International Land-Sea Trade Corridor.

The new route is of great significance to furthering trade and economic cooperation between China and Brunei, she noted.

"In February 2017, Guangxi Beibu Gulf International Port Group Company Ltd. and Brunei's Darussalam Assets formed a joint venture company to operate the Muara Port container terminal, injecting new vitality into the port," Xiao Jianguo, Chinese ambassador to Brunei, told the ceremony.

The opening of the new container shipping route marks another step forward in infrastructure connectivity and trade flow between China and Brunei, which will facilitate bilateral economic and trade relations and help Brunei's economic diversification efforts, the ambassador added.

The ceremony was attended by about 150 people including senior officials of the Brunei government, representatives of Chinese enterprises and personalities from all walks of life in Brunei.

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