Growing traffic for China railroads: Report

Growing traffic for China railroads: Report

China's railroads handled more than 182 million tons of cargo in May, an increase of 5.4 percent over the same month last year, according to the official state Xinhua news agency.

The Ministry of Railroads reported that 99,158 freight cars were deployed each day in May to carry cargo throughout China, an increase of nearly 4 per cent over May 2003.

The report said that the country's railway system is facing increasing pressure for freight services, especially in northwest China, as the growing economy consumes vast amounts of energy and raw materials.

Xinhua said statistics showed that the railway authority in Lanzhou handled more than 28 million tons of cargo in the first five months of 2004, an increase of 1.93 million tons over the same period last year. The report said the railway authority in Lanzhou is only capable of meeting a third of the present rail freight demand in the area by providing 3,000 freight trains daily.

The report pointed out that during the five-month period, the railway handled 48.21 million tons of essential foodstuffs, nearly 15 per cent more than in the same period last year. Oil transport also increased by 12 per cent to 49.06 million tons.