China Intermodal Transport Services to the Interior Project (CIDA, 2000-2007)

CIDA contributed CAD $6 million, assisting the interior provinces in China to improve intermodal transportation services by training the selected management and technical personnel in Canada and providing technical assistance by Canadian specialists.

1) Project Introduction

The project began in January 2000 and was completed in December 2007. ITSIP was a bilateral governmental co-operation project between Canada and China, funded by the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) with a total funding of CAD $6.5 million. TTA, with its consortium partner Consilium Service Inc., was selected by CIDA through a competitive bidding process as the Canadian executing agency to manage and implement the project, in cooperation with the Chinese Executing Agency designated by the Ministry of Commerce (MOCOM, which is CIDA's counterpart in China), i.e., the Bureau of Economic Operations of National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) in China.

3-3 ITSIP1The project promoted China's continuing economic reforms in areas critical to the 3-3 ITSIP1development of a market economy. It also contributed to the improvement of transport services to the poorer interior provinces by promoting more efficient and less polluting intermodal transportation in China, specifically in the following areas:

  • Improved national intermodal transport policy;
  •  Streamlined procedures for intermodal transport services (regulations, etc);
  • Higher standards & quality of intermodal transport services;
  • Reduced environmental impact from intermodal transport;
  • Increased awareness amongst stakeholders in market-oriented policies, regulations, modern shipper logistics, and efficient intermodal services;
  • Better understanding of the issues in intermodal transport to the interior and the initiatives necessary to improve them;
  • Informed decisions to improve the management, operation and investment of intermodal transport services to the interior;
  • Better awareness of environmental issues related to intermodal transport to the interior (advantages of rail/inland waterways over trucks & mitigation measures line-haul and at ICDs);
  • Timely and efficient implementation of the project.

These were achieved by the project through awareness building (AB) and training programs delivered in Canada and technical assistance (TA) provided in China to 17 interior provinces. The 17 interior provinces were jointly identified and selected by MOCOM/ NDRC/ CIDA, and were grouped into three regions as follows:

  •  North Western Region: Xinjiang, Gansu, Qinghai, Ningxia, Shaanxi
  • South Western Region: Sichuan, Chongqing, Guizhou, Yunnan
  • Central Region: Inner Mongolia, Shanxi, Henan, Anhui, Hubei, Jiangxi, Hunan, Guangxi

The focus of both AB and TA was on officials, shippers and operators involved in providing intermodal transport services to the interior. Project activities took place in the provinces through regional centers and completed with the strong support of the participating provinces. The two crosscutting themes of gender equality and environmental enhancement were integrated into the project to strengthen the participation of women and the stakeholder's awareness of environmentally sound practices in the intermodal transport sector.

2) The implementation and management of the project was performed in accordance with the CIDA's Results Based Management (RBM) method.

3) Project Implementation and Results

A total of 459 people, who were either governmental officials or company managers involved in intermodal transportation in the 17 interior provinces, participated in the awareness building and training programs in both Canada and China. They were trained on the subjects of intermodal transportation policies and regulations, modern shipper logistics, efficient management and operations of intermodal transport services, and environmental practices in intermodal transportation.

Picture 033Prior to the in-Canada study tour, 14 groups received a one-week briefing in China, Picture 033including coverage of China's dual economy, characterized by fast growing coastal provinces and economically backward inland regions, and a site visit to the Port of Tianjin. This laid the groundwork for an exposition of government and business practices and cultures in Canada to maximize the outcome of the in-Canada training. The remaining eight groups also attended one to three days of briefing.

An integrated and linked approach for presentations, seminars and site visits was adopted for an effective and efficient training model. The presentations and seminars included Canadian transportation policy and regulations, legal framework, an overview of Canadian and international intermodal transport and modern logistics, freight forwarding and customs clearance, and the Great Lakes/St. Lawrence Seaway managing model. It also covered the subject of gender equality. The site visits included Transport Canada, the Canadian Transportation Agency, London Drugs Distribution Center, Port of Vancouver, Port of Montreal, CP and CN Intermodal Terminals, PBB Global Logistics and Apex Express Trucking Services. The wrap-up session was also conducted to summarize and discuss what was learnt and observed. The contents of seminars and workshops were carefully designed and the presentation materials were handed out to trainees. Digital copies were saved on CDs and distributed to participants. The training materials were also available and could be downloaded from the ITSIP website.

The Canadian TA team conducted 16 TA missions, with each mission taking about two weeks to complete. During these missions, Canadian TA specialists conducted technical assistance and delivered advisory services and practical solutions to the technical problems for the following companies:

  • Sichuan Deyang Secondary Heavy Equipment Company in Sichuan Province;
  • Jiangxi Changyun Group in Jiangxi Province;
  • Jiangxi COSCO in Jiangxi Province;
  • China Rail Container Transport Company Lanzhou Branch in Gansu Province;
  • Lanzhou Pacific Logistics Company in Gansu Province;
  • Baotou International Inland Container Depot in Inner Mongolian Autonomous Region.

Canadian TA team also developed and proposed a new development strategy for the Yangtze River waterway intermodal transportation systems and a new model for managing the Xiangjiang River waterway transportation systems.

Canadian TA specialists developed the following technical manuals that have been referred to by the managerial and technical personnel working in the intermodal transportation sector of the interior of China:

  • Manual for Inland Container Depot (ICD) Operations and Management;Picture 035
  • Manual for Rail Intermodal Transportation;
  • Manual for Freight Forwarding;
  • Manual for Trucking Intermodal Operations and Management;
  • Manual for Inland Water Intermodal Transportation.

Both hard copies and CDs of these manuals were distributed to the project's stakeholders and participants in the 17 provinces as reference material. To share the project results and achievements with the managers and government officials responsible for intermodal transportation in the interior provinces and the interested public, five conferences and forums were organized and held in China during the project duration. Additionally, a project website was developed and maintained as a portal for disseminating the results achieved by the project. A project newsletter was also published quarterly, with 16 issues in total to provide all the project participants with news updates on the progress of the project.