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China’s high-speed rail expansion leaves US behind

 

Chinese bullet train. Photo by Occam

There was an interesting item on National Public Radio this morning about the amazing expansion of China's high-speed rail network.

In two years' time, China will have about 8,000 miles of high-speed rail tracks - which means it will have more than all of the rest of the world combined. NPR notes:

Soon, almost all the major cities in Eastern and Central China will be connected by high speed rail. Shanghai to Beijing the same distance as Washington, D.C. to Orlando, Florida - will take four hours by train from next year.

And while the U.S. has allocated just $8 billion to high-speed rail as part of the recent stimulus package, Chinese investment in its network has topped $120 billion so far, with several hundred billion in further spending planned.

As the NPR report points out, this expanding network is bringing real economic benefits. You can listen to the entire 4 minutes, 24 seconds segment here.

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