BLG Logistics has signed a letter of understanding for a new joint venture with the Chinese supply chain provider Cinko SCM. The companies will jointly operate a PDI centre at the port of Tianjin’s ro-ro terminal, called BLG Cinko Autotec, and will export vehicles produced in China. Import vehicles for the Chinese market will also be processed at the facility.
BLG Cinko Autotec plans to handle an annual volume of around 38,000 vehicles on the 55,000m2 facility.
“We will serve Chinese OEMs who are going to export cars out of China and on the other side we will serve import organisations in China if they are going to get cars from Europe and/or America,” a spokesperson for BLG told Automotive Logistics. “Our function is more related to import and export rather than domestic logistics.”
That function will cover storage, customs clearance, handling and a full range of technical services.
BLG already handles exports of Chinese vehicles from OEMs, including First Auto Works, Geely and Chery, through its Bremerhaven port facility in Germany. On the export side it has supported shipments to China via Bremerhaven for vehicle makers including Audi, BMW, Mercedes, Porsche and Volkswagen.
The company also takes care of parts shipments from Europe to Fuzhou in China for Mercedes where the carmaker produces Vito and Viano MPVs. BLG carries out quality checks at Fuzhou as part of the contract.
So far the company says it does not have any plans for establishing a transport fleet in China.
“Cinko will handle the forwarding business by themselves and, if necessary, also the transportation within China. If we will have a clear demand from any customer of the future needs more transport capacities we will evaluate if it makes sense to build up own capacities,” said the BLG spokesperson.
Cinko was established in 1997 and initially focused on freight forwarding activities in connection with vehicle exports from China. In 2010 ocean forwarder Eukor acquired a 20% share of the company and today Cinko organises supply chains for Chinese automobile manufacturers.

BLG does handle the onward transport of Chinese brands to Eastern Europe by means of feeder vessels. The company has locations in Poland, Russia, Ukraine, Slovenia, Slovakia, the Czech Republic and Illichevsk on the Black Sea.

The company said it also has plans to establish a terminal on the border to Russia for the transfer from Russian wide-gauge to European normal-gauge railway wagons.
Vehicles coming from Asia to Europe via the Trans-Siberian Railway could then be shipped onward by rail in the future according to the company.
In other BLG news, the company recently handled the discharge of around 10,000 vehicles at its Auto Terminal at Bremerhaven, delivered simultaneously on five Höegh carriers: Höegh Triton, Höegh Trotter, Höegh Oslo as well as the two chartered carriers Jupiter Spirit and Ocean Challenger.
With 88 calls last year, Höegh Autoliners numbers among the biggest customers at the BLG Auto Terminal. In 2010 approx. 105,000 vehicles were handled for Höegh vessels, an increase of nearly 40% compared to the previous year.
Picture: BLG CEO Detthold Aden (second left) and deputy chairman Manfred Kuhr (left) at the signing for the establishment of the joint venture BLG Cinko Autotec