China will operate bullet trains to Tibet, close to the Indian border in Arunachal Pradesh before July this year, marking the opening of high-speed train services to all Chinese mainland provincial-level regions, a senior official has said.
A 435-km rail link to the regional capital of Lhasa will run Fuxing high-speed trains powered by both internal-combustion and electricity, Lu Dongfu, board chairman of China State Railway Group Company Limited, told state-run Xinhua news agency on Saturday.
Construction started in 2014 on the railway line connecting Lhasa with Nyingchi in eastern Tibet. It is the first electrified railroad in Tibet and is slated to begin operations in June 2021. The track-laying work was completed by the end of 2020, the report said.
The railway has a designed speed of 160 km per hour, according to Tibet Railway Construction Company Limited, a subsidiary of China State Railway Group. China aims to extend the total length in operation of its high-speed train network to around 50,000 km by 2025, up from 37,900 km by the end of 2020, Lu said.
The high-speed railway network will cover 98 per cent of cities with over 500,000 residents, he said. China’s self-developed Fuxing trains now operate at a speed range of 160 kmph to 350 kmph, Lu said.
China is ramping up the train network in the country’s southeast Tibet Autonomous Region connecting its remote parts with the Chinese mainland.