Mayor Puente: “We hope to be an important player in the future of bilateral trade relations with China”
The Yiwu-Madrid (YXE) freight railway, the longest rail link in the world, connects the eastern Chinese city with the capital of Spain. For the northern Spanish city of Valladolid, the YXE offers a unique opportunity to deliver their products — especially food and agricultural produce — straight to the Chinese markets.
“We expect to take advantage of the passage of this train through the city with the construction of an intermodal railway station as well as a container management and logistics center in order to promote commercial exchanges with China”, said Oscar Puente, Mayor of Valladolid, for Xinhua.
“We hope to be an important player in the future of bilateral trade relations with China. We have always maintained very close contact with the Chinese community here. For example, in the midst of the pandemic, we received significant donations of medical supplies from the local Chinese community,” said the mayor.
He said Valladolid will continue to maintain “the best and closest possible relations” with the Chinese community and with China.
Valladolid, situated in the heart of the Autonomous Community of Castilla and Leon, is a major producer of agricultural products and boasts a booming food processing industry.
The city lies on the Atlantic rail freight corridor, which is bound to become a key artery in the coming years and is aiming to replace road transport. The corridor connects the western part of the Iberian Peninsula to France and Germany.
Puente highlighted that both the Spanish and the Portuguese branches of the Atlantic corridor pass through Valladolid, making the city a communication hub with the rest of Spain and even the rest of Europe.
Spain’s Ministry of Public Works has built Europe’s most important railway repair workshops in Valladolid and is also preparing to construct an intermodal freight station next to these workshops that aims to boost goods traffic by rail with Valladolid as a departure and arrival point.
The city of Valladolid is also involved in an industrial, logistics and agri-food project in the surroundings of this multimodal freight station. The project will start with a first phase over 150 hectares close to the workshops and could eventually extend to 700 hectares, the mayor said.
The YXE train passes through this project’s development area, which includes an agri-food park and the future multimodal station. “Therefore, the YXE train would allow us to connect with the rest of Spain and with the rest of Europe, but obviously China represents an important market opportunity for us.”
“We will be able to export agri-food products from Castilla and Leon to China, and at the same time we will use raw materials and agri-food products imported from China,” he said.
Valladolid aims to extend its cooperation with China to cultural exchanges and tourism as well. The mayor said that although Spain and China are separated by thousands of kilometers, culturally they are much closer to each other.
“We share many values and elements that make our relationship very easy. The local Chinese community, for example, is perfectly integrated in Spain and they have adapted very well here,” said Puente.
“We have always felt respect and admiration for the customs, serenity and rigor of the Chinese people and also for the work they carry out in our country. Therefore, I believe that Spain and China have a very rich and bright future ahead of them,” he said.
Photo: Juan José Berhó. Source: china.org.cn