The train will take 18 days to cover the 12,000 mile journey and is carrying a cargo of clothes, bags and other household items. Commercially, it’s cheaper than air freight and faster than sea transportation. So, London will become the 15th European city to join what the Chinese government calls the New Silk Route, which will pass through Kazakhstan, Russia, Belarus, Poland, Germany Belgium and France before arriving at Barking Rail Freight Terminal in East London, which is directly connected to the High Speed 1 rail line to the European mainland. The railway is a major strategic development to assist Xi Jinping’s multi-billion dollar ‘One Belt, One Road’ strategy. There are currently 39 routes linking 16 Chinese cities to 12 European cities.