That Leaving Feeling
Rail transport is an important mode of long-distance transportation in the People’s Republic of China. As of 2013, the country has 103,144 km (64,091 mi) of railways, the third longest network in the world, including 11,028 kilometres (6,852 miles) of high-speed rail (HSR), the longest HSR network in the world. All provinces and regions are connected to the rail network except Macau. Almost all rail operations are handled by the China Railway Corporation, a state-owned company created in March 2013 from dissolution of the Ministry of Railways.
China’s railways are among the busiest in the world. In 2006, they carried a quarter of the world’s rail traffic volume on only 6 percent of the world’s tracks. In 2013, railways in China delivered 2.106 billion passenger trips, generating 1,059.56 billion passenger-kilometers and carried 3.967 billion tons of freight, generating 2,917.4 billion cargo tons-kilometers.
The railway network has been expanding rapidly in recent years. Driven by need to increase freight capacity, the country budgeted $105.9 billion for railway investment in 2013, and has a long term plan to expand the network to 270,000 km (170,000 mi) by 2050.