Vice-premier stresses railway safety, service

Updated: 2011-12-23 22:20


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BEIJING - Chinese Vice-Premier Zhang Dejiang said on Friday that the country's railways should prioritize safety while seeking to constantly improve services and push forward reforms in the sector.

Zhang made the remarks at a national railway conference held in Beijing after Minister of Railways Sheng Guangzu said that the country would reduce its investment in railway infrastructure construction to 400 billion yuan ($63 billion) next year, down from 469 billion yuan this year.

Zhang said that despite achievements in the sector in recent years, the nation's railway transportation capacity still falls short of meeting actual demand from a fast growing economy.

He said the sector will face "very arduous" tasks in terms of construction, reform and development next year, but did not elaborate.

He stressed prioritizing the safety and quality of railway projects through scientific design, construction, and operation.

Zhang also called on the country's railway sector to enhance technological improvements and innovations, and strengthen efforts to speed up the process of taking its homegrown high-speed technologies global.