China's railway line with Europe has boosted foreign trade in east China's export powerhouse of Zhejiang in the first quarter, according to the line's operator.
The Yiwu-Madrid freight route saw 11 trips in the first three months carrying 958 TEUs, up 556 percent year on year.
The train service links Zhejiang's Yiwu, the world's largest wholesale market for small consumer goods, with the European commodity center of Madrid by way of northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region.
The freight service is operated by the Yiwu Tianmeng Industrial Investment Co. Ltd., a private firm.
Feng Xubin, chairman of the company, said a rail line from Yiwu to the Iranian capital, Tehran, was launched on Jan. 28. Goods can continue on to Europe through existing rail routes from Tehran.
"Many foreign companies have approached us to discuss the opening of more direct transnational freight services with Yiwu. A line to Russia is under discussion," he said.