On April 26, a “Chang’An” freighttrain fully loaded with LONGi modules left Xi’an for Europe, the first time thecompany has delivered its products via intercontinental rail. The train, carrying11MW of Hi-MO4 modules, is expected to arrive at LONGi’s local bonded warehousingcenter in Rotterdam, Netherlands in around 20 days, with the modulessubsequently delivered to the company’s distributed solar customers inEurope.
“This is the first Sino-Europeanfreight train dispatched by LONGi,” said Xu Zhipeng, Senior Manager of LONGi’sLogistics Department. “Since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, globallogistics, including transport capacity at ports and with shipping companies,have been seriously impacted. The rail option can greatly increase capacity,significantly improve timeliness and also lower cost of delivery.”
The security and stability oflogistics is crucial in the production and delivery of modules. In order to deliver products tocustomers in a timely and safe manner, and ensure that projects are completedon schedule, LONGi’s logistics team has worked on a number of sea, land and air solutions.
Since February, due to the pandemic,the Spring Festival holiday has been extended and traffic restrictions implementedin many Chinese cities. Overseas, ports have closed, air travel has been suspended,and roads have been blocked. These factors have had an obvious impact on procurement,logistics and transportation. The timeliness and reliability of module deliveryhas naturally also been affected.
Opting for rail as a method for long-distancedelivery was an innovative choice undertaken by LONGi after careful evaluationof several alternatives. Traditionally, modules destined for overseas have been mainlydelivered by sea. Though timeliness can be an issue, cost and stability havemade it the first choice among module manufacturers. Intercontinental railtransport was rarely chosen because of economic and other concerns. The use of railon this occasion will effectively improve the time table for delivery of LONGimodules to Europe and also enhance the turnover efficiency of the Europeanwarehousing center. It will also greatly improve operational efficiency for customers, whichis especially important for distributed businesses that require higherefficiency and flexibility.
To this end, LONGi’s distributedstrategy department coordinated for two months with more than 10 otherdepartments, carrying out testing, evaluation and optimization of all linksfrom production and packaging to logistics, testing, delivery and supply chainsupport. In order to ensure the reliability of long-distance railtransportation, the department organized a test run between Xi’an and theNetherlands in March. The technical service and R&D teams examined theproducts closely after the test run, optimizing packaging and standard cabinet modesaccordingly, to ensure the protection of the products for the next journey.
Delivery by rail will suit LONGi’smodule production bases in Xi’an and Xianyang very well. Module capacity inXi’an will allow the company to cover the European market in a more economicalway and further develop its overseas footprint.
“LONGi is committed to the conceptof reliable development and makes every effort to ensure production and supply.The opening of the Sino-European rail option is not only an inevitable step in LONGi’sglobal business development, but also an innovative approach for us to takeadvantage of the opportunity presented by China’s Belt and Road Initiative. Wewill continue to optimize routes, improve delivery efficiency, and ensureefficient operations for our customers,” said Niu Yanyan, Directorof LONGi Solar’s Distributed Strategy Management Department.