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Chinese railfreight challenges

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The British government has been fascinated by China’s development of a high speed passenger rail network. But rail’s share of Chinese freight shrank dramatically from about 48 per cent to 17 per cent between 1980 and 2012, China Rail Corporation general manager Sheng Guangzu said.

[‘Heavily indebted China Railway Corp expected to raise freight rates’, by Celine Sun, South China Morning Post, 11 Jan 2014]

[…] By contrast, the market share of road freight jumped from 6.4 per cent to 35 per cent.

One reason is the overtaking of “dark goods” by “white goods”. Dark goods, a term used in the railway industry to describe coal and other raw materials, are the principal type of railway cargo.

While the volume of dark goods has remained steady in recent years, that of “white goods”, which are those other than raw materials, has been growing rapidly, and they are mostly transported by road.

The country’s rail freight services have been notorious for their complicated application procedures, long waiting times and being a breeding ground for corruption.
Statistics from [China’s] National Audit Office show that the new national railway operator [China Railway Corp] was bogged down in debt of 2.9 trillion yuan in June last year, while its total assets were valued at 4.66 trillion yuan.

Written by beleben

January 15, 2014 at 7:28 pm

Posted in High speed rail, Railways

Tagged with ,

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