BEIJING, Jan. 11 (Xinhua) -- China is encouraging the development of multimodal transportation in an effort to ease road traffic congestion and lower transportation and packaging costs.
Qualified freight companies including railway, road, water and air cargo businesses can carry out multimodal transport operations connecting different ways of transport either individually or in partnership with other companies, according to an industry development circular issued recently.
The circular was drafted by 18 governmental agencies spearheaded by the Ministry of Transport (MOT).
No newly-added administrative approval measures will be targeted at businesses carrying out such operations, said the circular, adding that the nation aims at creating an open, unified and fair multimodal transportation market.
Conditions should be created for more medium and long-distance freight to move from road transportation to railways, cargo vessel and other transportation modes in an orderly manner, it noted.
This is a "strong reform signal" from the government to encourage development of multimodal transportation, Wang Shuiping, an official with the MOT said Wednesday at a press briefing reviewing highlights in the circular.
China's road-dominated transportation mode had low added value that require reforms, Wang said.
Intermodal road-rail-water-air transportation can help optimize China's transportation structure, alleviate traffic congestion and save land resources, said Li Muyuan, an expert with China Communications and Transportation Association.