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Scotland gets first direct container link with China

Scotland is getting its first direct container link with China in a new service that promises to cut transit times by nearly half.

The maiden voyage from Ningbo is due to arrive in mid-August at Greenock Port carrying 1,600 teu. Sailings will occur three times a month with a 10-day port rotation and will be between the ports of Ningbo and Dongguan to Liverpool and Greenock.

The direct China Xpress route, launched by Glasgow-based KC Group Shipping, is expected to cut journey times from approximately 60 days to an estimated 33 days by eliminating unscheduled port congestion delays in Rotterdam.

“This is a game-changer, not just for KC Group Shipping, but for the whole of Scotland,” said David Milne, the company’s managing director, who completed a buy-out of the business in 2016.

KC Group Shipping is one of a host of nimble UK transport firms to have set up container shipping services during the pandemic.

Sam Chambers

Starting out with the Informa Group in 2000 in Hong Kong, Sam Chambers became editor of Maritime Asia magazine as well as East Asia Editor for the world’s oldest newspaper, Lloyd’s List. In 2005 he pursued a freelance career and wrote for a variety of titles including taking on the role of Asia Editor at Seatrade magazine and China correspondent for Supply Chain Asia. His work has also appeared in The Economist, The New York Times, The Sunday Times and The International Herald Tribune.


  1. everything is good. as long as you keep china on your borders. only containers. once you let them inlands. think your country is swallowed.

  2. Incredible news ! Post Covid-19 extinction, I sincerely appreciate the launch of direct shipping services between Scotland and China. I am sure both the countries must have put in their valuable efforts in drafting and formalizing the trade link by sea transportation and hope the mutual trade will benefit both the countries in the right spirit. Hats off to the architects who have brought the trade link into reality.

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