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Just the Facts: Where China Beats the Entire World

How China’s high-speed rail network beat global expectations.

November 13, 2013

Credit: Khalidshou - Wikiemedia

1. China’s first high-speed train connected Beijing with the nearby port of Tianjin in 2008.

2. China’s high-speed track network in service has now reached 10,000 kilometers (or 6,200 miles).

3. In a time span of just five years, China’s high-speed train network has grown to be larger than that in all of Europe, which got its start in 1981 in France.

4. China’s high-speed rail network now links more than 100 cities.

5. In December 2012, the latest section was opened, connecting 2,400km from Beijing to Shenzhen, on the border with Hong Kong.

6. Skeptics had believed there would not be enough demand and that the network would mostly serve political prestige purposes.

7. China’s high-speed trains carry almost 2 million people daily, which is about one-third of the total number of the country’s rail passengers.

From Faster than a speeding bullet (The Economist)




Chinese high-speed rail, launched only in 2008, now spans 10,000 km and serves over 100 cities.

China has built more high-speed rail in just five years than all of Europe in 32 years.

China’s high-speed trains carry almost 2 million people daily, already a third of all of China’s rail passengers.