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Beijing News: Half a Trillion Spent on Urban Railways in 2017; Four Cities Break Even; 30 Run at a Loss

Beijing News recently reported that, according to a report that the Chinese Urban Rail Transit Association just released, China spent RMB half a trillion (around US$73.2 billion) in 2017 alone to build urban rail transit systems. By the end of 2017, a total of 34 cities completed their systems, with an operational railway length of 5,033 kilometers. At the same time, there are another 56 city systems still under construction, with a planned total length of 6,246 kilometers. With the massive expansion of urban rail projects, more and more issues and risks have started to occur and the government has called off some projects. These city rail transit systems imposed a major burden on the local budget of the cities. At the same time, the systems are largely under-utilized. Among the completed 34 rail transit systems, only Beijing, Guangzhou, Shenzhen and Wuhan broke even financially. All of the other 30 cities run their systems at a loss.

Source: Beijing News, September 6, 2018