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China to invest 800b yuan in railways in 2020

By Yang Yang | chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2019-12-27 13:21

A China-Europe freight train bound for Almaty, Kazakhstan sets out from Urumqi, Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region, on May 25, 2019. [Photo/xjdaily.com]

China is expected to invest about 800 billion yuan ($114.29 billion) in railways, about 1.8 trillion yuan in highways and waterways, and 90 billion yuan in civil aviation, the Ministry of Transport said on Thursday.

China has completed approximately 3.21 trillion yuan in investment in transportation fixed assets in 2019, Minister of Transport Li Xiaopeng said at an annual meeting of the Ministry of Transport on Thursday as reported by Chinese financial news outlet Yicai.

It is estimated that an additional 8,000 kilometers of railways and 330,000 kilometers of roads have been built in the past year, as well as 385 kilometers of high-grade waterways and five civil transport airports, Li said.

Construction of postal express service outlets and intelligent delivery terminals has also been accelerated in 2019, according to Li.

China's business environment has been further optimized. In 2019, it is estimated that it will reduce logistics costs by 80 billion yuan in the transportation sector, and reduce taxes and fees for civil aviation by 9 billion yuan.

As of Dec 18, the total number of electronic toll-collection (ETC) devices for customers in China had reached 192 million, with 111 million new ETC customers, reflecting that 101.25 percent of the release target for ETC had been achieved.

Apart from building the Beijing Daxing International Airport, more than 290,000 kilometers of additional rural roads have been built or upgraded in the past year.

In term of work plans for 2020, China will coordinate major projects, reforms and policies to speed up the development of the country's transportation industry in railways, highways, water transportation, civil aviation, postal services, urban transportation and transportation services, Li said.

To deepen supply-side structural reform in transportation, China will accelerate the construction of railway projects from Chongqing to Kunming and Hetian to Ruoqiang, and promote special railway lines to enter ports, logistics parks and large industrial and mining enterprises next year.

To build an integrated three-dimensional traffic corridor along the Yangtze River Economic Belt, China will strive for delivery and trial operations of the 6 meter-deep waterway regulation project from Wuhan to Anqing next year.

The country will also accelerate the building of key waterway projects from Chaotianmen to Fuling, and coordinate preliminary work of the construction of the new water transportation channel of the Three Gorges hub.

China will deepen reform in investment and financing, stabilize special transport funding policies such as the tax on car purchases, adjust and optimize the structure of expenditures, and improve the special bond system for toll roads next year, Li said.

The country will also encourage general bonds to support the development of ordinary roads and rural roads, guide nongovernmental funds to participate in transportation construction, and promote the continuation, adjustment, and improvement of policies related to port construction fees, according to Li.

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