Print This Page Email This Page
Private Entities Urged to Invest in Railways

Minister of Railways Liu Zhijun has encouraged overseas and domestic private investors to get a share in the railways' as China accelerates the construction and reconstruction of its railway network.

"We welcome overseas and domestic private investors to get part ownership of the railway lines, except the trunk rails," Liu said on the sidelines of the annual National People's Congress (NPC) session.

This is a major step in investment reform and will get the government "ample capital" to realize its plan to expand the railway network from the present 70,000 km to 120,000 km by 2012.

Potential investors have been lukewarm to invitations to invest I the railways for fear low profits because the government still controls the transport pricing regime.

Overseas and domestic investment in the railways from 2003 to last year was 10 billion yuan (US$1.4 billion), Liu said. But their share is less than 2 percent of the total investment of 522 billion yuan (US$73.4 billion) in past five years.

"Future investment opportunities will increase because we are going to raise some incentives to change the situation," Liu said without giving details of the pricing regime reform.

Earlier, he said the government will spend up to 300 billion yuan (US$42.18 billion) to build 7,820 km of tracks this year, when separate power generating units will be set up at more than 2,000 railway stations.

The railways experienced the worst disorder last month when heavy snow and sleet stranded millions of passengers desperate to return home for Spring festival. Five years from now, passengers won't have to suffer the same predicament in such a situation, Liu said.

"The heavy snow showed the railways are behind the country's economic and social development," he said. "It reminded us that we have to try every possible means to increase our railway transportation capability."

He asked local railway departments to maintain a balance between a reserve of electrical engine trains and diesel-fueled locomotives. "We will try to improve the transport capability of the Beijing-Guangzhou railway and other major lines to a great extent in three to five years," he said.

(China Daily March 10, 2008)

Related Stories
- First Privately-funded Railway Begins Operation
- Sichuan to Have a Private Railway
- Private Railway in Guangdong to Boost Local Economy

Print This Page Email This Page
Water Pollution, Laborers' Rights Top Legislature's Supervision List
National Committee Needed for 'Left-behind' Minors
Minister: Employment Situation 'Very Severe' This Year
China to Upgrade Expressway in Worst-hit Area After Snowstorm
China Marks Int'l Women's Day
Nuclear Power Capacity Expected to Be 60 Mln Kw by 2020

Product Directory
China Search
Country Search
Hot Buys