Antwerp Port Authority has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC) to seek new opportunities that match the One Belt One Road strategic plan launched by China in autumn 2013. With this project China aims to link its main industrial cities more closely to commercial centres elsewhere in Asia, the Middle East and Europe.
As part of this collaboration ICBC will for example bring the port of Antwerp and related investment opportunities to the attention of Chinese investors. In addition the port’s business activities will be promoted among ICBC’s customers.
“Our efforts are directed at strengthening the positions of both sides as part of the One Belt One Road project,” explained chief commercial officer Luc Arnouts who signed the MoU on behalf of the port authority. “Antwerp is an attractive partner not only because of its location in the heart of Europe; its many overseas shipping connections make Antwerp a leading port at the western end of the modern Silk Road. “
The port of Antwerp has been making great efforts for a number of years now to increase its market share in China. Few ports in Europe have courted the world’s most populous nation as seriously as Belgium’s top port. Last year, China accounted for 40% of Antwerp’s volumes.