Construction of a high-speed rail line between Beijing and Shenyang in Liaoning Province, worth 70 billion yuan (US$10.22 billion), will start in June.
When it is completed, expected to be 2012, passengers will be able to travel the 687 kilometers in two hours and 18 minutes, the Huashang Morning Post reported today.
The 350 km/h trains will take one and a half hours less than the current fast train.
Meanwhile, the high-speed rail line between Shanghai and Hangzhou has been approved by central government and construction will start in about a month.
And 1,200 kilometers, more than 90 per cent, of what will be the world's longest high-speed rail line, connecting Shanghai and Beijing, has been completed. More than 110,000 people are working on the project.
When the railway is completed, trains will reach Beijing in five hours instead of the current 11.
The ministry has said it plans to have 120,000km of rail lines in service by 2020, of which 16,000km would be dedicated passenger lines.
By the end of this year, China will have more than 79,000km of rail lines. To meet the 2020 target will require investment of about 5 trillion yuan (US$727 billion), the ministry said.
(Shanghai Daily February 6, 2009)