The Beijing to Shanghai High-Speed Railway is scheduled to begin operation in the middle of June 2011, one year ahead of its original schedule — according to a recent announcement by the minister of railways, Liu Zhijun.
Construction started on the 1,318-kilometer railway in April 2008 and it will cut the journey time between the two cities from the current 10 hours to less than five hours.
Liu said that a new-generation bullet train, with a speed of 380 km per hour will run on the high-speed rail link. The railway will be able to transport 80 million passengers a year.
With a total investment of CNY220.9 billion, the Beijing to Shanghai High-Speed Railway is expected to put competitive pressure on the airlines that serve this route.