Red Sea crisis and shipments from China to Europe: possible alternatives to sea transport

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Rail transport from China to Europe: a valid solution to “circumnavigate” Red Sea problem

Red Sea crisis scenario

Red Sea crisis is still going on after 60 days and disrupting global supply chains. Main maritime carriers – like Maersk, MSC, Evergreen, CMA CGM – keep diverting all container vessels from Red Sea routes around Africa’s Cape of Good Hope. The number of cargo ships in the Red Sea has decreased by 90% compared to 2023 (Clarksons Research).

The repercussions of the Suez Canal Crisis reverberated across the global shipping industry.

Hundreds of large vessels are rerouting around the southern tip of Africa, a longer route adding 10-14 days of travel, to escape drone and missile attacks by Yemeni Houthis.

This has created a multiple-front storm for global trade: freight rates increasing daily, due to longer shipping times and container ships and oil tankers’ shortage (occupied for longer). Higher insurance costs must then be added to the cost of fuel.


Rail transport from China to Europe: a valid alternative to sea freight

The Red Sea attacks by Houthi forces have triggered a notable surge in demand for rail shipments from China through Russia to Europe, offering an alternative as maritime routes face disruptions.

For example, the Rail Bridge Cargo, a Dutch logistics company, said to CNBC China-Europe rail route bookings were up 37% from the beginning of the crisis.

Rail goods trains are a very efficient way of shipping from China to Europe, they are cheaper than air freight and take much less time to travel from China to Europe than sea freight (18-22 days)

The China rail freight to Europe is known as the Eurasian Continental Bridge. It is the longest railway line in the world, passing through Kazakhstan, Russia, Belarus, Poland and Germany before reaching its final destination.

Other solutions: the air freight transportation

As sea routes face increased risks, airfreight becomes a crucial alternative for timely and secure cargo delivery.

Shipping by plane is much more expensive than shipping by sea freight or air freight, but it’s efficient, safe and fast.


Reasons to choose Asian Logistics import transport solutions from China

  • Collaborations with the most reliable transport carriers
  • Extensive network of trusted partners and collaborators throughout China
  • Scrupulous customer assistance
  • Smart work management
  • Highly trained staff, native Chinese speaking staff
  • Door-to-door service
  • Tailor-made logistic solutions according to customer need
  • Customs and document consultancy
  • We love “difficult” shipments!


Contact us as trusted Italian freight forwarders. We’ll assist you with the best rail transport service from China to Europe!

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