High Speed Rail Spurring Economic Growth in China

A large-scale program of high speed rail projects is creating a huge economic impact in China. The fast timeline for these rail projects and the jobs they are creating have American officials looking on jealously.
February 14, 2010, 5am PST | Nate Berg
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"Indeed, the web of superfast trains promises to make China even more economically competitive, connecting this vast country - roughly the same size as the United States - as never before, much as the building of the Interstate highway system increased productivity and reduced costs in America a half-century ago.

As China upgrades and expands its rail system, it creates the economies of large-scale production for another big export industry. 'The sheer volume of equipment that they will require, and the technology that will have to be developed, will simply catapult them into a leadership position,' said Stephen Gardner, Amtrak's vice president for policy and development."

By 2012, China will have 42 high speed rail lines in operation. The first U.S. project -- an 84-mile link between Tampa and Orlando -- is scheduled to open in 2014.

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Published on Friday, February 12, 2010 in The New York Times
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