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Alibaba launches South Korea logistics service

Bundled package of import/export service saves five days transit time, e-commerce giant says

A Boeing 757 cargo jet operated on behalf of Cainiao. (Photo:

Cainiao, the logistics arm of Chinese electronic retail giant Alibaba, this week began offering turnkey logistics and supply chain services for local businesses in South Korea.

The Alibaba Group (NYSE: BABA) logistics unit said its first- and last-mile, warehouse management, international shipping, trucking and customs clearance services should reduce delivery times to five to seven days from the current 10 to 13 days. 

Cainiao is using its cloud-based logistics platform to connect cargo owners and transport service providers as well as sophisticated tracking technology to automate information sharing. It said it has more than 162,000 square feet of warehouse space strategically located near Incheon International Airport and the ports of Incheon and Buson to handle imports and exports.

China is South Korea’s largest trading partner, accounting for $160 billion, or 26%, of total exports and $107 billion, or 21%, of imports.

Cainiao said it will handle international shipments between the countries with six container vessels and six cargo planes per week. Cainiao uses contract carriers to operate its private airline and acts as a freight consolidator for ocean shipments, pre-buying blocks of container space from shipping lines.

Earlier this month, Cainiao launched an air charter network with direct service to South America to speed transit times for e-commerce shipments from China.

The Amazon (NASDQ: AMZN) rival has said it plans to build out its international supply chain and launch direct routes to major markets around the world. It expects to operate about 1,300 chartered flights by the end of 2020.

Click here for more FreightWaves/American Shipper stories by Eric Kulisch.


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One Comment

  1. Warehouse Can Unloader

    Since Alibaba became a public company, the usefullness of Alibaba has become diminished to being just another ecommerce site. Is there an alternative to alibaba that is like it used to be?

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Eric Kulisch

Eric is the Supply Chain and Air Cargo Editor at FreightWaves. An award-winning business journalist with extensive experience covering the logistics sector, Eric spent nearly two years as the Washington, D.C., correspondent for Automotive News, where he focused on regulatory and policy issues surrounding autonomous vehicles, mobility, fuel economy and safety. He has won two regional Gold Medals and a Silver Medal from the American Society of Business Publication Editors for government and trade coverage, and news analysis. He was voted best for feature writing and commentary in the Trade/Newsletter category by the D.C. Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists. In December 2022, he was voted runner up for Air Cargo Journalist by the Seahorse Freight Association. As associate editor at American Shipper Magazine for more than a decade, he wrote about trade, freight transportation and supply chains. Eric is based in Portland, Oregon. He can be reached for comments and tips at [email protected]