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China completes high-speed rail links from south-west Yunnan

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China has completed two new high-speed rail links connecting Kunming, the capital of southwestern Yunnan province, with Shanghai and Guangzhou on the eastern coast, according to a transport ministry notice.

[SHANGHAI] China has completed two new high-speed rail links connecting Kunming, the capital of southwestern Yunnan province, with Shanghai and Guangzhou on the eastern coast, according to a transport ministry notice.

China is in the middle of an ambitious railway building programme and aims to criss-cross the country with four north-south and four east-west bullet train connections and expand its total network to 150,000 km by the end of the decade.

Its high-speed rail network will reach a length of 30,000 km by 2020, the state planning agency said in its "five-year plan" for the sector published earlier this year.

The new railway connecting Kunming with Shanghai was formally opened on Wednesday, and is China's longest east-west high-speed link. It stretches 2,252 km and will take 11 hours and 15 minutes, less than half the previous travelling time, the notice said.

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According to the official China Daily, 29 of China's 31 provinces and regions are now served by high-speed rail, with only the regions of Tibet and Ningxia in the north-west yet to be connected.

REUTERS

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