China begins rail service with new, high-speed trains

The world’s longest high-speed rail line has begun operations in China.

The first train of the 2,298-kilometer Beijing-to-Guangzhou route departed from the capital at 9 a.m. local time, with a second train departing an hour later from Guangzhou.

Trains on the new route will travel at 300 kilometers an hour, which will reduce the travel time between Beijing and the southern economic hub from more than 20 hours to just eight. The trip is about 1,425 miles.

The Chinese government is planning to build a network of high-speed railways, with four east-west lines and four north-south lines in operation by 2020.

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