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Zhengzhou to Hamburg in 15 days

Deutsche Bahn has marked the arrival in the northern port of Hamburg of the first train from Zhengzhou, a key Chinese transport hub. The journey took just 15 days to complete.

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A new cargo train route has opened with the arrival in the northern German city of Hamburg of a train that started its journey in the Chinese city of Zhengzhou.

The train, carrying 51 containers, completed the 10,214-Kilometer (6,344 miles) trip in 15 days, about half the time it would have taken to ship the same goods, according to Deutsche Bahn head Rüdiger Grube.

"The growing shipments of Chinese goods, together with the ongoing relocation of production-intensive industries to the Chinese hinterland offers great potential," Gruber told reporters at the Hamburg cargo station, where he and other officials had gathered to welcome the train as it arrived on Friday. "DB Schenker (German railway operator Deutsche Bahn's cargo division) is in an excellent starting position for this in Asia," he added.

Zhengzhou is an industrial center of almost nine million people and is situated at a key transport junction.

pfd/jr (AFP, dpa)