Volume of railway passenger transport in China 2009-2019

In 2018, railway passenger transport in China had amounted to about 1.41 trillion passenger kilometers. The volume of railway passenger transport is calculated from the product of the number of passengers and the distance traveled in kilometers.

Rail system in China

   As of end of 2018, the total operating length of rail network in China amounted to over 132 thousand kilometers. Since the availability of resources varies greatly throughout China, the railways play an essential role in dealing with the allocation of resources. Among regions with extended rail network, Inner Mongolia accounted for over 12 thousand kilometers, almost double that of Hebei, which is the second longest rail network in China.

Rail passengers

   With budget airlines being largely unavailable as in other countries, most Chinese rely heavily on rails to move across the country. While the rail network is constantly developing, the number of train passengers in China has only been increasing since 2005, reaching a peak of 3.38 billion in 2018. Although the number of rail passengers has tripled itself over a decade, the transport distance of the passengers decreased from over 500 kilometers in the early 2000s to just 419 kilometers in 2018. Region-wise, Henan and Hebei have the highest rail passenger transport capacities among all the regions in China.

Volume of railway passenger transport in China from 2009 to 2019

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Release date

April 2020



Survey time period

2009 to 2019

Supplementary notes

Figures have been rounded.
Earlier figures were taken from previous publications.

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