The Lijiang-Shangrila Railway, an important part of the Yunnan-Tibet Railway and railway network in west China, started construction on July 22.
The Yunnan-Tibet Railway, the second railway to enter Tibet, is a sky-road connecting Tibet with other regions of China. It represents the Central Government's concern for ethnic minorities.
"The local government and the construction organization should cooperate and finish construction with high quality and efficiency," said Li Jiheng, governor of Yunnan province.
Ding Shaoxiang, Yunnan province's vice-governor, said that the construction of Lijiang-Shangrila Railway had carried the dreams of the people of Yunnan.
"I hope that the construction can be finished safely and efficiently," Ding added.
The Lijiang-Shangrila Railway runs 139.66km from Lijiang to Shangrila with an investment of 10.37 billion yuan ($1.67billion). The construction is expected to finish within six years. The Lijiang-Shangrila Railway will play an important role in improving the transportation in northwest regions of Yunnan.
More importantly, the railway will extend to the north and connect with the railway lines of Lhasa to make up the Yunnan-Tibet Railway.
By Ge Jieru and edited by Brian Salter