CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE | Faced with disruptions caused by the pandemic, Jinko Solar has made significant changes to its supply chain to boost resilience and flexibility, while reducing the carbon footprint from factory to port.
Jinko Solar is one of the largest and most innovative solar module manufacturers and service providers in the world. Its products and services serve commercial and residential customers in more than 100 countries via 10 production facilities, 20+ logistics centers, and 30+ service centers globally.
One of the factories is located in Chuzhou, China. Due to its hinterland location 500-600km from the nearest port in Shanghai or Ningbo, the company has been facing more severe container shortage caused by the pandemic than others in coastal locations. Jinko Solar’s supply chain has been further disrupted as transportation costs are higher and there is a shortage of long-haul trucking capacity between loading port and factory. As a result, storage of finished products at the factory site has become an issue, especially when production grew 30% year-on-year in 2021 and is expected to continue at similar pace for the next three years.
The disruptions and challenges have caused instability, inefficiency and extra costs across the company’s supply chain, calling for integrated solutions.
In Jinko Solar, we have a great partner where priorities align well. Supply chains require a strong focus on resilience, flexibility and reducing exposure to local and global disruptions, where operational excellence and innovation represent the backbone for us.
To ease its customer’s headaches at origin, Maersk conducted a study for setting up a CFS facility (Container Freight Station) to relieve the storage pressure and increase the turnover of container equipment.
The study identified Nanjing as the ideal location to set up the CFS facility, catering for the demands of the Chuzhou factory for lower storage costs and shorter distance to factory, while enabling expandable space from 2700 to 6000 sqm by Q1, 2022.
The domestic transportation route was also optimised by using a barge from Nanjing to Ningbo on consideration of lower costs, lower carbon emissions and better container availability.
At destination, Jinko was facing VAT advancement challenges and was in urgent need of a professional warehouse and intermodal service provider for the handling and delivery.
Maersk provided a professional customs house brokerage service with VAT deferment and delivered a cross-dock facility, enabling a change to flatbed truck for final delivery that matched the requirements of both Jinko Solar and consignees.
Since the implementation of these initiatives, Jinko Solar’s production has been stabilised and conducted according to plan without disruption, as the increasing volume of finished goods can be sent to the CFS facility right after production.
With higher flexibility for empty container pick-up, the shipping time was reduced from 14 days to 7 by shipping the empty containers via domestic barge. Also, cargo flow was stabilised due to better equipment availability to Nanjing, ensuring the right cargo to be shipped out at the right time.
As an international container shipping company with integrated logistics capabilities, Maersk has been an important strategic partner for Jinko Solar since 2017. We are very pleased to expand our strategic cooperation with Maersk, and deepen our resources to jointly develop flexible and convenient solutions to manage the current shortage of containers due to the pandemic and improve transport efficiency.
“As the world's leading, integrated module manufacturer, we remain optimistic about the growth in demand for solar energy and expect increasing shipment capacity will provide strong support for our global shipment growth over the next few years. By leveraging our mature global customer marketing system, together with Maersk's extensive network of end-to-end integrated transportation and logistics expertise, we believe that we will be able to share more timely information and provide long-term premium logistics solutions to our global customers."
Through supply chain optimisation, logistics costs decreased by 30%, and carbon emissions dropped 67% for origin transportation. Both numbers indicate that Jinko Solar has managed to run an integrated, end-to-end logistics solution from the factory in China to project sites across Europe with high efficiency in difficult conditions.
“Our team takes tremendous efforts every day to provide Jinko Solar with dynamic and sustainable supply chain solutions as a modern logistics company. We look forward to continuing and further expanding with Jinko Solar on this journey,” added Manuel Olberding.