Air cargo trade with ASEAN reaches 59,000 tons

Writer: Han Ximin  |  Editor: Zhang Chanwen  |  From: Shenzhen Daily  |  Updated: 2023-05-25

Shenzhen's air cargo trade with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) reached 59,000 metric tons between January and April this year, data from Shenzhen Customs showed yesterday.

So far, Shenzhen Bao’an International Airport has opened nine cargo routes to the ASEAN region including Singapore, Kuala Lumpur and Bangkok with a total of 96 flights operating weekly.

Customs officers check quarantine access certificate of durians imported from the Philippines. Courtesy of Shenzhen Customs

On April 11, a flight loaded with 18.9 metric tons of durians from the Philippines arrived at the international cargo terminal of Shenzhen airport. It was the first batch of durians imported from the Philippines via Shenzhen airport checkpoint after obtaining quarantine access to China.

“We mainly import fruits, fresh aquatic products and electronic devices from ASEAN countries and commodities for exports are mainly smartphones and semiconductor components,” Ma Hui, vice general manager of Shenzhen Wuzhou International Cargo Forwarding Co. Ltd., said.

In another development, fruits produced in China like lemons from Sichuan, tangerines from Yunnan and bergamot pears from Hebei are gaining popularity in the ASEAN markets. Previously, for a long time, apples, grapes, tangerines, pears and other fruits produced in the country’s temperate zones had been favored by customers in the Philippines, Thailand, Malaysia and Indonesia. Around 75% of fruits exported from Shenzhen were sold in the ASEAN market.

To meet this increasing demand, Shenzhen airport opened cargo flights between Shenzhen and Jakarta, Indonesia earlier this month.

The flights are operated by Central Airlines, running six times a week with a transportation capacity exceeding 120 metric tons.

Inbound cargos are mainly seafood from Southeast Asia and tropical fruits like durians and bananas. Outbound cargos are mainly e-commerce goods such as electronic products and clothes.

This year marks the 20th anniversary of China’s accession to the Treaty of Amity and Cooperation in Southeast Asia and 10th anniversary of the Belt and Road Initiative.

China and the ASEAN became each other’s largest trading partner in 2020. China’s trade with the ASEAN amounted to 6.52 trillion yuan (US$924.85 billion) in 2022. Trade between China and the ASEAN is expected to increase further with the launch of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) agreement, the world’s biggest free trade pact.