Market Intelligence
Rail Transportation China

China Urban Rail Transit Market

The urban rail transit market in China is experiencing significant growth. 

According to China’s Urban Rail Transit Association, by December 31, 2020, 45 cities in China were operating a total of 7,978 kilometers (KM) of urban transit lines. Of these lines, 6,300 KM or 79% were metro lines, while light rail, monorail tram, urban rail rapid transit, and maglev lines made up the rest. This is up from 26 cities with 3,618 KM of track in 2015. 

This growth was driven by a large number of second tier Chinese cities reaching a point where the central government’s National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) evaluates the local economy and government revenues can support building and operating a new urban rail transit system. 

In 2020, NDRC approved Xuzhou, Hefei, Jinan, and Ningbo’s new urban transit construction plans and approved Xiamen, Shenzhen, Fuzhou, and Nanchang to build new metro lines with additional cities expected to receive approvals over the next 5 years.  During the time period 2015-20, the Chinese government’s average annual investment in China’s urban rail transit market was about $93 billion with total investment during this five-year period reaching $465 billion.  U.S. companies have been successful as suppliers of rail transit equipment for many of these new urban rail projects in China.  

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