| Azlan Othman |
BRUNEI Freight Forwarders Associations (BRUFA) President Thomas Koh was in Singapore to attend the launching of the Cooperation of Multimodal Transportation Alliance, which is part of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) as well as the New International Land-Sea Trade Corridor Forum, at the Mandarin Orchard Hotel from May 12-14.
Singapore’s Minister of Manpower Josephine Teo and Secretary of the CPC Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region of the People’s Republic of China Lu Xinshe were also present at the launching.
Speaking to the Weekend Bulletin yesterday, Thomas Koh said the alliance acts as a platform for business and investment cooperation, where the ASEAN Freight Forwarders Association or AFFA (in which BRUFA is one of its members) can establish contacts and explore business opportunities, as well as utilise relevant schemes provided by China’s government, in this case the Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region and Nanning City Government.
In September last year, AFFA members, China Federation of Logistics and Purchasing (CFLP), China Chamber of International Chamber of Commerce (CCOIC) Guangxi Chamber and China-Singapore Nanning International Logistics Park (CSILP) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for the formation of ‘China-ASEAN Multimodal Transportation Alliance’ during the 15th China ASEAN Business and Investment Summit (CABIS).
Guangxi, as the main gateway of the Belt and Road Initiative and the New Land-Sea Corridor in the western China connecting the ASEAN member countries, promotes regional economy development with a multimodal transportation system.
The alliance strengthens the multi-lateral trade in logistics and supply chain, which opens a new chapter of China-ASEAN multimodal transportation cooperation and contributes significantly to the Belt and Road Initiative as well as the New Land-Sea Corridor.
The alliance will play an important role as a platform to deepen mutually beneficial cooperation between China and ASEAN member countries and enable sharing of resources in the region.
AFFA has agreed to open up a representative office in Guangxi as supporting services such as administration and consultation for its business application for registration of companies for its members. This will be a strategic and historical moment between the two regions.
Countries not connected through land participation over China’s Belt and Road Initiative in the New Land-Sea Corridor noted an important step for national logistics players to have an alternate link of multimodal transportation through a hub in the Western region of China.
AFFA believe there are tremendous business opportunities between China and ASEAN member countries, therefore it shall continue to collaborate with the BRI.