China Daily. Next year, the Inner Mongolia autonomous region will start the construction of a 1,000-km (621-mile) rail line to transport coal to ease the country’s coal transportation bottlenecks. The new line is expected to transport 200 million tons of coal annually; the project is in line with the government’s policy to boost domestic demand.
Inner Mongolia will invest over 170 billion yuan [US$24.9 billion] in building railways by the year 2013, and the total length of the railways will increase to over 13,000 km from the present 6,800 km, said Xu Jing, who oversees railway projects in the local development and reform commission. Rail lines for coal transportation will account for an important part of the project, he said.
At present, Inner Mongolia is still facing coal transportation bottlenecks. Currently only 150 million tons of coal can be transported out from the autonomous region. This year the total coal output from the region is expected to surpass 400 million tons. Transportation bottlenecks are often seen as major impediments to the development of China’s coal industry.