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Kunming high-speed rail link planned

Construction of a high-speed rail link between Shanghai and Kunming, capital city of Yunnan Province, is to start before the end of the year.


The 2,066-kilometer line will cut at least 10 hours off the current 37-hour journey on completion, which is expected to be in 2014, the Oriental Morning Post reported yesterday.


It will be the longest high-speed rail line in the world.


Stops on the route will include provincial capitals such as Hangzhou in Zhejiang, Nanchang in Jiangxi, Changsha in Hunan and Guiyang in Guizhou, the report said.


The rail link is one of several projects awaiting the green light from central government as China embarks on a construction program to create jobs and stimulate the economy. Construction of a high-speed rail line between Beijing and Shenyang in Liaoning Province will start in June and a similar one between Shanghai and Hangzhou will start to take shape next month.


More than 90 percent of the 1,200km high-speed rail line connecting Shanghai and Beijing has been completed. When finished, the trip will take five hours instead of the present 11 hours.


The ministry has said it plans to have 120,000km of rail lines in service by 2020.


By the end of this year, China will have more than 79,000km of rail lines.


(Shanghai Daily February 10, 2009)