The State Council recently issued a three-year plan to push forward restructuring transportation, in a bid to efficiently tackle pollution, raise the efficiency of transportation and lower logistics costs.
The plan is part of supply-side structural reform and will improve the overall transportation network by transferring some of the road volume to railroads and waterways.
According to the plan, compared with 2017, the country will witness a 30 percent increase in railway transportation volume, or 1.1 trillion tons, and the waterway transportation volume will be 7.5 percent and 500 trillion tons, by 2020. Accordingly, the road transportation volume for bulk cargo will see a reduction of 440 billion tons, whereas the multi-modal transportation volume will see a 20 percent annual increase.
The plan concentrates on North China’s Beijing municipality, Tianjin, Inner Mongolia autonomous region, Hebei province, and Shanxi province, East China’s Shanghai, Shandong province, Henan province, Jiangsu province, Zhejiang province, and Anhui province, Northeast China’s Liaoning province, and Northwest China’s Shaanxi province.
With regard to the work in boosting railway transportation capacity, the plan said that further improvements should be made in arterial railway transportation, with related policies, such as the long-term plan on construction of railway network, being efficiently implemented.
Meanwhile, construction of railway lines for exclusive use by large industrial and mining enterprises and logistic zones will be sped up, 80 percent of which, with annual transportation volume of over 1.5 million tons, will be exclusive lines by 2020.
Organization of the railway transportation system will be further optimized, prioritizing the supply of coal, hard cokes, ores, and cereals, compounded with flexible and better coordinated train arrangements.
Service of railway transportation will be further boosted as well, with more efforts to be made in structural reform of the market-led transportation pricing system. And the plan also encourages direct cooperation between railway transportation enterprises and ports, logistics zones, large industrial and mining enterprises, and logistic enterprises.
As for upgrading the waterway transportation system, an improved inland and coastal waterway transportation system is in order, on the premise of well-protected ecology and environment.
Additionally, the connection among port distribution railways with backbone railways and container yards should be constantly pushed forward. By 2020, key ports, both coastal and inland, will be covered with a distribution railway network.
The direct transportation from rivers to seas, according to the plan, will also be substantially boosted, with more effort in restructuring port facilities and research on ships.
In order to alleviate excessive road transportation volume, the plan emphasizes the regulation in freight overload. Weighing tests for freight vehicles will be completely applicable at toll stations all across the board by 2020, with overload rates lower than 0.5 percent.
In addition, standardization of freight vehicle models will be beefed up, with related enterprises and industries rendering subpar vehicles obsolete while ushering in standardized ones.
As the plan said, the intensive development of road transportation will be propelled, in a bid to facilitate the emerging business types and modes of Internet Plus freight and logistics.
The circular encouraged enterprises in railways, ports and shipping to strengthen cooperation and promote shipping containers to transport through railway ports.
It supports the construction of multimodal demonstration projects, and urges operational monitoring of the project, as well as the innovation of transportation organization models.
In addition, more support is pledged to the green freight distribution demonstration projects in urban areas, aimed at completing around 100 projects by 2020.
The country will speed up promotion of new energy and clean energy distribution vehicles. By 2020, among new and updated vehicles in urban areas, over half will be new energy vehicles or clean energy vehicles, with 80 percent for key areas, according to the State Council.
Work is also planned to combine roads and railways to transport production and living provisions for cities, and build a new distribution mode of “rails + warehouses” in urban logistics.
Public information platforms on multimodal transportation should be established as soon as possible, for information exchanges and sharing between different departments, such as transportation, customs and market supervision, according to the circular.
Information reporting and monitoring analysis on transportation structure adjustment will also be strengthened.
In addition, the State Council promised financial support policies.
The use of land for special railway lines, and the use of sea for wharves for combined railway-water transportation and cargo shipment are being guaranteed.
A good environment for development was also promised.