Bureau: China will balance books on high-speed rail

15:09, August 12, 2010      

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The Beijing-Tianjin Intercity Railway will break even this year and based on comprehensive analysis, all future high-speed rail operations will break even without a doubt, said Deputy Director General of Transportation Bureau Su Shunhu on Aug. 11.

Su said that the profitability of high-speed rail is not as vulnerable as many people believe. This year the Beijing-Tianjin inter-city railway will break even he said. The operating situation analysis also shows the profitability outlook of the Hefei-Wuhan, Zhengzhou-Xi'an and Wuhan-Guangzhou lines is very optimistic. In particular, the tremendous profitability potential of the Wuhan-Guangzhou Line will be realized later, he said.

There has been concern about less-than-encouraging ridership on a number of high-speed rail lines due to high fares. The fact is that high-speed railways generally have high ridership. Since July of this year, 11 operating high-speed railways have had an average occupancy of 120 percent, while the national railway has an average of 133 percent occupancy.

Currently, there are 6,920 kilometers of high speed railway in operation. The continual development of high-speed railway eases the cargo capacity pressure of existing railways.

Su Shunhu said the construction of high-speed rail is to meet passenger demand, while improving the quality of travel and increasing cargo capacity. From January to July 2010, the national railway transported 2.1 billion tons of goods, an increase of 250 million tons, up 13.7 percent.

By Huang Beibei, People's Daily Online


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