The network of China Railways is one of the most densely used in the world. More than 2.9 billion passengers have travelled across China by high-speed train since April 2007 and in 2013, China’s high-speed rail network recorded 214 billion passenger kilometres – more than the rest of the world put together.
While new transport needs are emerging and existing transport needs are growing, between 2000 and 2013, China Railways experienced robust rail traffic growth. Rail passenger traffic grew by 5.5 percent per annum reaching 2.1 billion passengers and 1,060 billion passenger-km in 2013, and rail freight grew by six percent per annum reaching 4.0 billion tons and 2,903 billion ton-km in 2013.
This report – High-Speed Railways in China: A Look at Traffic – seems to suggest that China’s substantial investment in high-speed rail over the past decade is being justified by the system’s increasing patronage. The research also looks the types of passengers using high-speed trains in China and how passengers travel habits are changing because of the introduction of new high-speed routes.