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September 29, 2009

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Train trips to Fujian just got a lot quicker

TWO high-speed passenger railway lines in east China's Fujian Province and neighboring Zhejiang Province went into operation yesterday, greatly reducing the travel time from mountainous Fujian to the Yangtze River Delta.

The Fuzhou-Wenzhou line shortens the travel time from 15 hours to 100 minutes. Trains can travel up to 250 kilometers per hour on the line, said Gao An'gang, from the Nanchang Railway Bureau. The other line links Wenzhou and Ningbo cities in Zhejiang Province.

Construction on the two lines, about 580km in total, began in 2004 and 2005 respectively. The railways, also cut the travel time from Fuzhou to Shanghai from 11 hours to about five hours.

Fujian, on the Taiwan Strait, is an important destination for Taiwan residents when visiting the mainland. However, road traffic from Fujian to other provinces has been congested. The new lines will help tackle the problem.

The railway official said another four high-speed railway lines are under construction in Fujian to link cities including Xiamen and Putian in two to three years.

Also yesterday, a railway connecting well-known tourist cities Dali and Lijiang in southwest China's Yunnan Province started operating.

Construction started on the line in December 2004 and was due for completion in June 2008, but difficult terrain and repeated revisions of the plan - including a decision to use electric power instead of diesel-powered locomotive - led to delays, said Su Huimin, from the railway bureau of Kunming in Yunnan.


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