World News – September 2019 – 2



China’s economy in the third quarter was the weakest it has been this year, according to the China Beige Book, with manufacturing, property and the services sectors all worsening, even as borrowing picked up.

Manufacturing revenue, profits, volumes and sales prices fell by double-digit paces from the previous three months, although borrowing remained at its highest level, according to the quarterly report.

“Retail and services stood out mostly for how incapable they were at picking up the slack,” the report said.

The current weakness in the economy is primarily due to manufacturing. While a drop in exports was a factor, most of the decline was due to “considerably slower sales price growth,” according to the report. Prices at the factory door stopped rising in June and then fell in July and August, which can hurt companies’ profits, limiting their ability to invest and service debt.

The services sector continued to underperform, with both revenue and profits dropping from the same period last year. Hiring also slowed, which means that “if manufacturing does have to shed a large number of jobs, services has shown no capacity to absorb them,” the report said.

There was a resurgence of borrowing in the period. Shadow banking posted the biggest quarterly increase since the Beige Book began, bond issuance rose for a fifth quarter and lending increased.

These trends indicate there isn’t a shortage of credit to the economy, the report said.

Pent-up demand for loans, which shows who wants to get access to capital but can’t, was at its lowest in four years. Meanwhile, more than 30% of manufacturing firms were borrowing each quarter, indicating that “the sector as a whole is in clear distress or a large proportion of firms should be failing,” according to the report.

The report is based on interviews with more than 3,300 firms conducted in China from mid-August to mid-September.

Source: Bloomberg

China’s Economy Struggling Across All Sectors, Beige Book Says


Minister Turhan, şimdiHalkalı-Kapıkul Railway Line Project In his speech at the groundbreaking ceremony, as Turkey, linking three continents, said that they have a very important geo-strategic and geopolitical position.

Turkey is both a geographic location, cultural heritage and historical continuity with both Asia and the Middle East and the Mediterranean and the Black Sea as well as Turhan said that the European countries, drew more than 50 percent of Turkey’s exports of gold that perform in Europe.

Turhan, „more than 67 percent of direct investments in Turkey come from European producers to Europe and Turkey is an important part of the production and supply chain. It is possible to carry all this upwards, and this can only be achieved through a fair, stable approach. Also turmoil that have lived in the world makes it essential to move Turkey to the EU’s further along. „He said.
“One generation project”

Turkey and Turhan explained that historical responsibility of developing relations between the European Union, the railway line will be laid today the foundation has insisted he will further strengthen relations with the EU.

Halkalı- Turhan stated that with the commissioning of the Kapikule railway line, the final phase of high-quality connection to Trans-European Transport Networks will be completed.

„In Turkey, ensuring the highest standards of European integration of transport networks, always been among our priorities. Request, Halkalı- With the opening of the Kapıkule Railway Line, the final phase of high-quality connection to Trans-European Transport Networks will be completed. Due to our country’s position that connects Europe to Asia and the Far East, the fact that the trade routes between Europe and Africa are at the focal point for growing Asian economies makes the construction of this line much more important.

It is also very meaningful that the line will contribute to One Generation One Road Project which aims to create a huge infrastructure and transportation network by connecting China, Asia, Europe and the Middle East. In order to make this project, the ‘Middle Corridor,, as we call it, hayat the Modern Silk Road hayat, have become very important in our country, on the east-west and north-south axis. Therefore, we have approached the implementation of the Iron Silk Road from London to Beijing as a strategic issue from the very beginning. With the Marmaray and Baku-Tbilisi-Kars Railway line that we opened for service, we have demonstrated our support and belief in this project very clearly. ”

Halkalı-Kapıkule Railway Line Project, in cooperation with the European Union for a long time to realize that the project is an effort to underline the Minister Turhan, said:

„Both Turkey as well as the European Union is party time considerably at all levels, and efforts have been made labor. With the launch of the line, commercial mobility for all will be serious and everyone will benefit. Budget size and technical features, as well as our country’s route from the Bulgarian border to Istanbul, Halkalı-Kapıkul Railway Line Project geographically symbolizes the binding Turkey to the EU.

Halkalı- With the opening of the Kapıkule Railway Line, commercial mobility will reach serious levels for all, and everyone will benefit. We will lay the foundation Halkalı-Kapıkule Railway Line Project Çerkezköy- For the construction of Kapıkule Section, a new record will be set by using the EU grant of 275 million Euros. The workforce that will be needed during 4 year construction works will be provided from the region as in our other projects. With the commissioning of the line, commercial mobility will reach serious proportions and everyone will benefit. ”


In his presentation, Hans Klemm will touch upon energy security in the region, and prospects for US companies in the Romanian energy sector.
US investment in Romania is diverse and extensive.

There are equipment manufacturers such as General Electric, with oilfield equipment manufacturing facility is located in Ploiesti and Cameron.

Companies such as Hunt Oil, Mazarine, Sand Hill, and Stratum have invested in increasing recovery from Romania’s mature on-shore fields.

Exxon-Mobil is considering major investments offshore. Black Sea Oil & Gas and Carlyle group are going ahead with the first new offshore project in the region.

US Ambassador to Romania to speak at the Black Sea Oil & Gas conference


On 18 September 2019 the Amber Rail Freight Corridor held its grand Opening Event in the prestigious Praetorian Palace in the Slovenian seaport of Koper. EU Transport Commissioner Violeta Bulc, who gave an inspiring welcome address to the participants, congratulated the Amber Rail Freight Corridor to this historic milestone and emphasized the importance of the corridor for the development of international rail freight in Central-Eastern Europe.

Commissioner Bulc highlighted the important role of EU Rail Freight Corridors as an integral part in the European policy for the Trans-European Networks for Transport (TEN-T). She also underlined the contribution of rail freight to achieve key objectives of the EU White Paper on Transport and encouraged the Amber Rail Freight Corridor to continue working closely together with customers as well as with terminals to ensure a good interconnection with other transport modes. She also announced that rail would continue to be in the focus of TEN-T funding even in the up-coming 2021-2027 EU Multiannual Financial Framework.

Another speaker from the European Commission, Keir Fitch, Head of the unit for rail interoperability at DG MOVE, stressed the need to make rail more attractive and competitive on the transport market, emphasizing that the Amber Rail Freight Corridor, together with the other EU Rail Freight Corridors, must form a European-wide network for competitive rail freight. Combined with a full implementation of the 4th Railway Package the objective is to achieve a truly Single European Rail Area, which would help rail to deliver an even stronger contribution to the de-carbonization of the European transport system. He also emphasized the need to exploit the full potential of digitalization and automation in rail transport, drawing the attention to the EU-wide research and development initiative Shift2Rail, which is now starting to deliver tangible outcomes.

From the side of the Ministries the State Secretaries for Transport of Slovenia, Nina Mauhler, and of Hungary, László Mosóczi, welcomed in their speeches the opening of the corridor. They reiterated the strong commitment, which the countries have to the Amber Rail Freight Corridor, underlining that it was the first of the EU Rail Freight Corridors established on the joint initiative of Member States. The Ministerial session of the Opening Event concluded with the Ministries’ Representatives of all four countries signing an agreement handing over the chair of the Executive Board of the corridor from Hungary to Slovenia.

Welcome addresses to the participants of the Opening Event were also given by Matjaž Kranjc, Director of the Slovenian Railway Infrastructure SŽ-I, and host of the event, and Dimitrij Zadel, President of the Management Board of the Port of Koper.

Andrea Mosóczi, Chairperson of the Management Board of the Amber Rail Freight Corridor, recapitulated the numerous steps, which were taken by the corridor Members – five Railway Infrastructure Managers and one Allocation Body – to make the Amber Rail Freight Corridor operational. She also thanked the Commission for the support from the Connecting Europe Facility and presented to the audience the promotional movie, which had its premiere on the Opening Event (the video can be watched on the website of the corridor).

Mr András Nyíri, Spokesperson of the Railway and Terminal Advisory Groups (RAG/TAG) of the Amber Rail Freight Corridor, congratulated the corridor to its opening and presented in his speech expectations of the corridor customers on the future development of the corridor. He underlined the value, which Rail Freight Corridors provide to customers by creating a permanent international platform to discuss issues in cross-border rail freight and to elaborate new and better solutions. He also welcomed the adoption of an Action Plan by the RFC Amber Management Board on the previous day, aiming at investigating a number of both short- and long-term measures to improve the corridor; this Action Plan had been elaborated jointly with the RAG/TAG.
Speakers from Metrans Slovakia, the Port of Koper, the Freeport of Budapest, PKP Cargo and DB Cargo Europe demonstrated the multitude of stakeholders, customers and partners of the Amber Rail Freight Corridor; in their presentations they gave many insights into aspects which will be of importance for the development of the corridor in the future.

In the afternoon, a High-Level Corridor Roundtable with the corridor Members represented by Juraj Tkáč, CEO of ŽSR from Slovakia, Szilárd Kövesdi, CEO of GYSEV from Hungary, Franc Klobučar, Assistant Director of SŽ-I from Slovenia, Piroska Sárvári, Director-General for Operations of MÁV from Hungary, László Pósalaki, Head of Capacity Allocation of VPE from Hungary and Jarosław Majchrzak, Deputy Director of Development of PLK from Poland, responded to various questions concerning their view about the corridor. They highlighted the achievements, which had been made, the mutual benefits stemming from the close exchange with the customers, and presented on-going, planned or recently finalized infrastructure improvements of RFC Amber corridor lines, which help rail freight to become faster and more efficient. They also raised ideas how to improve the corridor further through smoother processes and market-oriented products and jointly expressed their commitment to continue the already close cooperation in the framework of the Amber RFC.

Dr. Gerhard Troche, Managing Director of the Amber Rail Freight Corridor and Moderator of the Opening Event, thanked all participants and guests of the event and all colleagues who had contributed to the successful establishment of the corridor. He concluded that the positive spirit of cooperation achieved during the establishment phase of the corridor creates a good basis for the future development of the corridor.

The Opening Event finished with a site visit to the Port of Koper, allowing interesting insights into a port, which is an important origin and destination of freight trains using the Amber Rail Freight Corridor and which shows a remarkably high share for rail in its hinterland traffic.

Source: Amber Rail Freight Corridor


Belgrade, September 21, 2019

The Prime Minister of the Republic of Serbia, Ana Brnabic, met today with a delegation of judges of the Supreme People’s Court of China, led by the President of that court, Zhou Jiang, and said that Serbia highly appreciates China’s role in respecting and defending international law.

The interlocutors stated that Serbia-China relations were extraordinary and characterized by a comprehensive strategic partnership and “modern steel friendship”.

During the visit, the President of the Supreme People’s Court and China Serbia signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Supreme Court of Cassation of Serbia, which will contribute to the improvement of cooperation between the two countries in the field of justice, as well as the computerization of courts, court administration and judicial training.

Since China is Serbia’s most important trading partner in Asia, our country attaches great importance to economic cooperation under the China-CEEZ mechanism, Brnabic said.

The Prime Minister is pleased that Serbia will have the opportunity to host the fourth China-CEEZ Ministerial Conference on Innovation, as part of that cooperation on October 8-9.

Brnabic stated that Serbia will continue to support China bilaterally and multilaterally, as well as through the “17 + 1” cooperation mechanism, to which our country attaches particular importance.

The Prime Minister congratulated Zhou on the 70th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China, which will be celebrated on October 1, 2019, and wished further success to China in all areas of its development on behalf of the Serbian Government.

PortSEurope Note: Chinese companies have been active in Serbia in recent years. In July this year, Chinese companies submitted bids for a contract to build part of a €297 million euro ($330.75 million) railway that will connect the Adriatic port of Rijeka with the Hungarian border.

The lowest bid was from a Chinese consortium of Sinohydro Corporation Limited and Sinohydro Engineering Bureau 4 co, which offered a price of 2.41 billion kuna ($365 million/€326 million).

Chinese businesses have invested heavily in transport and logistics assets in Europe, as they seek to increase access to European markets for Chinese-manufactured products (the new Silk Road).

Source: Government of Serbia


Taranto, Italy (PortSEurope) September 20, 2019 – On Twitter this week, Robert Yuksel Yildirim, President & CEO of Yildirim Group, owner of the Yilport terminal operator, said, “I had a very constructive and fruitful meeting with the Chairman of Cosco Shipping, Captain Xu Lirong in Shanghai regarding to Yilport Holding’s current operation and future cooperation with Cosco Shipping globally. We have decided to work together for building the future”.

No further details are available, but maybe Taranto port in southern Italy could benefit.

Autorita’ di Sistema Portuale del Mar Ionio (AdSP – Ionian Sea Port Authority) would welcome the presence of COSCO at Taranto port. In August this year, Yilport Holding signed a concession agreement with the AdSP, the managing institution of Taranto port for the multipurpose terminal. The deal was signed on 30 July 2019, at Castello Aragonese in Taranto, Italy by Robert Yuksel Yildirim, Yilport Holding Chairman, and Sergio Prete, the President of Taranto Port Authority. The agreement appoints Yilport to undertake all operations at the multipurpose terminal of Taranto Port for 49 years.

A link between Yilport and COSCO could lead to new container traffic at the port.

Yilport is also a 24% shareholder in the French shipping company CMA-CGM, which in turn, is a member of the Ocean Alliance shipping group with COSCO.