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China expands transport network to facilitate high-quality development

Xinhua | Updated: 2024-02-28 15:06

BEIJING  -- China has made notable achievements in improving its transport infrastructure network and transport services for the past year, the Ministry of Transport said on Wednesday.

Fixed-asset investment in the country's transport system totaled 3.9 trillion yuan (about $548.7 billion) in 2023, Li Xiaopeng, minister of transport, told a press conference.

A total of 2,776 kilometers of high-speed railways were opened, and 7,000 kilometers of expressways were built or expanded last year, Li said.

The country added or improved 1,000 kilometers of shipping lanes, and the number of airports for transportation stood at 259. Postal services were available to all administrative villages.

Meanwhile, China's transport services continued to improve last year with optimized transport structure, according to Li.

The country's commercial freight volume went up 8.1 percent year on year to 54.75 billion tonnes last year, an increase of 16.9 percent from 2019.

Passenger transport posted strong growth. The country's inter-regional passenger traffic rose 30.9 percent year on year to 61.25 billion trips in 2023, up 0.8 percent from 2019.

Li said that China had been promoting the high-quality development of its transport sector, deepening the country's green and low-carbon transformation.

China has also been strengthening its cooperation with foreign countries. Steady progress has been made in the high-quality development of the Belt and Road transport connectivity, he said.

Last year, China's express delivery volume was the highest in the world for the 10th year in a row, Zhao Chongjiu, head of the State Post Bureau, said in the press conference.

Express courier firms nationwide handled 132 billion parcels in 2023, up 19.4 percent compared to the previous year. The sector raked in total revenue of 1.2 trillion yuan during the period, up 14.3 percent year on year, said Zhao.

Noting that China has made remarkable progress in the transport sector over the past five years, Li said the total length of the country's comprehensive transport network has exceeded 6 million kilometers.

The operating mileage of the railway network reached 159,000 kilometers, of which high-speed railways accounted for 45,000 kilometers. The country had a total of 5.44 million kilometers of highways by the end of 2023, of which expressways represented 184,000 kilometers.

There were 2,883 10,000-tonne-class or above berths throughout the country by the end of last year.

Fixed-asset investment in China's transport system reached over 18 trillion yuan from 2019 to 2023, according to Li.

Looking forward, Li said the ministry will accelerate China's transformation into a transport powerhouse, increase effective investment, lower the cost of logistics and promote global transport cooperation.

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