DHL Global Forwarding is shaving 75 per cent off its transit times in the Pearl River Delta with its new road freight service utilising the new Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau Bridge (HZMB).
Although logistics companies have thus-far largely shunned the new route out of concerns over the cost of tolls and Customs issues on the mainland side, DHL says its transit times have been cut by a full six hours each way, which also translates to a 15 per cent reduction in costs.
The 24/7 route links Zhuhai in the West Pearl River Delta’s manufacturing hub of Guangdong province, with Hong Kong’s core air and ocean freight hubs in just two hours, compared with the previous eight-hour journey via Humen Bridge.
The new service operates from Hong Kong International Airport (HKG) and its surrounding ports to allow for more frequent flights and sailings, thereby supporting global exports of technological equipment, garments and electronics components from China to the rest of the world.
“The previous 200-kilometre route is now reduced to a mere 80 kilometres, allowing for greater flexibility in pick-ups and more stable transit times to support just-in-time manufacturing in the Delta,” says Steve Huang, CEO, DHL Global Forwarding China.
“Our customers will benefit from a more efficient, reliable and cost-saving route for the import and export of goods, particularly for finished or semi-finished products made out of materials sourced from all over the world,” Huang adds.
Offering full-truckload and less-than-truckload shipments, the solution incorporates warehousing services to consolidate worldwide import of raw materials to a single point, as well as distribute exports of finished goods from single to multiple points. Doing so reduces the number of individual transactions, customs fees, costs and overall delivery time of both inbound and outbound cargos for Chinese manufacturers, DHL says.
Open to the public since October 2018, the 55-kilometre HZMB undersea tunnel/bridge system is the longest sea and fixed crossing in the world. Previously, land transport over the Pearl River Delta was only possible via a detour along the Humen Bridge, with water transportation proving to be time-consuming and vulnerable to weather conditions.
Together with ongoing feeder connectivity, the DHL HZMB Road Freight Solution will cater to the 11 industrial heavyweight cities along the Greater Bay Area, home to over 70 million people and an economy worth over EUR 1.57 trillion.
The Zhuhai Hi-Tech Industrial Development Zone, one of the main areas serviced by the route has been fostering tech growth, with high-tech manufacturing contributing over EUR 3.83 billion – nearly 28 per cent – of the city of Zhuhai’s GDP in 2018.
“This latest addition will be able to meet the economic demands and adapt to commercial needs on both sides of the eastern and western bank of the Pearl River,” says Huang.
“Our new service, which ties directly into our larger multimodal network tracing the Belt and Road, will help make seamless freight connectivity between Asia and the rest of the world a reality. This would in turn bring a new degree of flexibility to our customers’ manufacturing and export strategies amidst even the most volatile market conditions.”