Why China Is so Good at Building Railways

  • Published: 13 November 2018
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    [1] economist.com/china/2017/01/13/china-has-built-the-worlds-largest-bullet-train-network
    [2] datahelpdesk.worldbank.org/knowledgebase/articles/906519-world-bank-country-and-lending-groups
    [3] documents.worldbank.org/curated/en/451551468241176543/pdf/932270BRI0Box30ffic020140final000EN.pdf
    [4] oag.com/on-time-performance-star-ratings-2018
    [5] export.gov/article?id=China-Aviation
    [6] translate.google.com.au/translate?sl=auto&tl=en&js=y&prev=_t&hl=en&ie=UTF-8&u=http%3A%2F%2Fpolitics.people.com.cn%2FGB%2F14562%2F10317457.html&edit-text=&act=url
    [7] ft.com/content/ca28f58a-955d-11e8-b747-fb1e803ee64e
    [8] hsr.ca.gov/docs/about/business_plans/Draft_2018_Business_Plan.pdf
    [9] openknowledge.worldbank.org/bitstream/handle/10986/25483/892000BRI0Box3000china0transport09.pdf?sequence=1&isAllowed=y
    [10] researchgate.net/profile/Ralf_Wilhelms/publication/280924889_Social_Benefits_As_Part_In_The_Economic_Evaluation_Of_High_Speed_Rail/links/55cb933508aebc967dfe1a03/Social-Benefits-As-Part-In-The-Economic-Evaluation-Of-High-Speed-Rail.pdf
    [11] xinhuanet.com/english/2018-05/05/c_137158303.htm
    [12] economist.com/china/2017/01/13/china-has-built-the-worlds-largest-bullet-train-network

    Animation by Josh Sherrington
    Sound by Graham Haerther (Haerther.net)
    Thumbnail by Simon Buckmaster

    Special thanks to Patreon supporters
    Alec Watson, Andrew J Thom, Braam Snyman, Bryan Yip, Chris Allen, Chris Barker, Connor J Smith, Daddy Donald, Etienne Dechamps, Eyal Matsliah, Hank Green, Harry Hendel, James Hughes, James McIntosh, John & Becki, Johnston, Keith Bopp, Kelly J Knight, Ken Lee, KyQuan, Phong, manoj kasyap govindaraju, Plinio Correa, Qui Le, Robin Pulkkinen, Sheldon Zhao, Simen Nerleir, Tim Robinson

    China airspace time-lapse courtesy FlightRadar24.com
    Air China 747 landing shot courtesy ZurichAirportSpotter
    China Eastern 737 takeoff shot courtesy PDX Aviation
    Tibet railway shots courtesy Steven Chen and PK Long

    Music by epidemicsound.com

    Select footage courtesy the AP Archive

Comments • 21 626

  • Jason Willows
    Jason Willows  4 hours back

    One reason I love living in Hong Kong so much is because of the MTR system, you can pretty much get anywhere within the country/city in an hour, it's crazy convenient and it sucks that the rest of the world can't keep up. I'd take the MTR over driving any day because it's consistent, cheap, fast and you can pass out for the entire journey, it's great.

    • Srsahiner
      Srsahiner  14 hours back

      if you can't spell Uyghur correctly, just say Turks.

      • li yaxin
        li yaxin  16 hours back

        I took this comparative economic development class in school. And the professor talked about the reform of China since 1978 and some major issues China faces. One of them was China had a weak infrastructure. Most of the coastal cities which are benefit from open door policies are highly developed while other cities in the middle far from the sea relying heavily on natural resources are slow in economic development. One way to resolve this was to build better infrastructure and roads to connect the major cities to the cities in mainland. Which Is exactly what China is doing. Build high speed Trains

        • Anthony Maw
          Anthony Maw  20 hours back

          High speed efficient transportation to the furthest outreaches of a nation have always been recognized as essential to nation-building. United States famously celebrated completion of their transcontinental railway (through Native American land) at Promontory Point Utah and what was known as the Dominion of Canada at the time celebrated it's Last Spike at Craigellachie in British Columbia in 1885 (also through appropriated aboriginal traditional territories and somewhat ironically built with Chinese labourers). So china is just following by example reaching out to Xinjiang and Tibet.

          • 王治信
            王治信  23 hours back

            tai wan form china

            • destroyer806
              destroyer806  2 days back

              I’ve been on the high speed rail it’s pretty cool

              • Maximilian Lee
                Maximilian Lee  2 days back

                Taiwan is also part of China and everywhere accept that only one China then why there’s no Taiwan island in your map?

                • Raymond LUO
                  Raymond LUO  2 days back

                  That's what we called"socialism"
                  State company make profit then go back to people and infrastructure, not those share holder

                  • Raymond LUO
                    Raymond LUO  1 days back

                    @Voltaire whatever you call,the fact is out these.

                  • Voltaire
                    Voltaire  1 days back

                    It's called authoritarianism

                • Er Pol
                  Er Pol  2 days back

                  That is what happend when there is no opposition

                  • 布克先森
                    布克先森  2 days back

                    full of pride and prejudice

                    • 布克先森
                      布克先森  2 days back

                      all we chinese do will be viewed of political.lmao!you all can never konw why we built the railway without earn money as well as the electric

                      • Derek O'Brien
                        Derek O'Brien  2 days back

                        I would expect that lobbyists would not be a problem in China; nit like in the US and to a lesser ectent in othewrv western vountries.

                        • Danielle Dumont
                          Danielle Dumont  2 days back

                          There’s no bad motive, in fact ethnic minorities also need an opportunity to develop and high speed rails provide that opportunity. What the video didn’t tell people is that ethnic minority regions are mainly arid inland places without available ports to connect to the outside world(meaning no easy trade and transportation and bad economy), and the people don’t really want to stay apart and poor. Don’t ask me how do I know, I’m from one of such places and I have been counting down for the past almost 10 years for the first high speed rail to operate in my homeland. Just please, please, please ask the ones who truly live in those places to get your information, instead of judging no matter what.

                          • Mr. Communist
                            Mr. Communist  3 days back

                            *Sheldon Cooper wants to know your location*

                            • Mrlightning 101
                              Mrlightning 101  16 hours back

                              Oh your here too? I thought you only watch warthunder stuff.

                          • Jim Bean
                            Jim Bean  3 days back

                            Lack unions end of story

                            • Totti Will
                              Totti Will  3 days back

                              there were terrorist incidents in west China, and you didn't say anything, because you wished to see that. and then we had a railway to there, you said that is politics. Yes, that is true, and so what?
                              I'm confused that why you can not realized that your country just spend your tax effort for useless war and stupid politics.
                              Sad for you guys, really.

                              • Aroyo
                                Aroyo  3 days back

                                Frump will never build that wall without the Chinese. Westerners are shitting their pants.

                                • SamUSA
                                  SamUSA  3 days back

                                  Why? Because the price of the ticket is a small fraction of the real cost. The rest of the cost is paid for by Chinese taxes. For example, if the ticket costs 65, but you pay 465 extra taxes to subsidize the ticket price. That is a false economy. China is very foolish to have spent so much money on these unprofitable high speed trains. The Chinese people will be paying for it for generations.

                                  Trains are most efficient carrying very heavy loads long distances at a slow speed. Even the most full passenger train car is almost empty weight in comparison. Just ask any automotive engineer with any heavy industry background. These kinds of high speed trains are foolish nonsense economically.

                                  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rail_subsidies "Rail subsidies are largest in China ($130 billion) and Europe (€73 billion), while the United States has relatively small subsidies for passenger rail with freight not subsidized."

                                  • richard chung
                                    richard chung  3 days back

                                    Because the Chinese stole everything

                                  • oil9vinergar
                                    oil9vinergar  3 days back

                                    slaves.... and lotz of 'em.......

                                    • mx li
                                      mx li  4 days back


                                      • Temujin
                                        Temujin  4 days back

                                        China builds, but muricunts bomb countries to sell more weapons to Saudi Arabia and prop up their Petrodollar fiat currency.

                                        • Kay
                                          Kay  4 days back

                                          This video is a JOKE!!!

                                          • Yiu Chung Au
                                            Yiu Chung Au  4 days back

                                            I don't get how a country's development of its infrastructure can be presented as a negative ? Integration and efforts into making the separatist provinces more familiar or identify with the Chinese identity (Consists of 56 ethnic groups). Stop forcing democracy (Works only when a mass population is educated) onto China, where history, social and sovereign factors impact on so much why a more centralized government is required. If you're out to disintegrate and cause harm to China, you're doing the right way. If you're truly for freedom of speech, relative human rights (compared to western countries), i just beg for you to think of this. Has any transition of power been peaceful and would democracy actually work while respecting the integrity of the country (China)? If you wanna argue how evil the CCP was in the past, well that's the past. Political reforms have been one of the key characteristics of Chinese socialism (the current CCP), it has come a long way and suffered. If you wanna settle a score with someone just because his ancestors did this and that. Well, maybe just maybe, the White folks have lost the plot ever since Renaissance. Cause your 'democracy' and 'freedom' is just ur narrative of a political correctness forced upon other groups regardless of their social, cultural and historical factors.

                                            • I Created An Account For This

                                              Trains go fast!

                                              • Calvin Deng
                                                Calvin Deng  5 days back

                                                It is because planes are from foreign companies, and China wants to keep infrastructure within China.

                                                • phillyslasher
                                                  phillyslasher  5 days back

                                                  China lol Hey, shut up about your gay little train and tell me what happens when you post a pic of Winnie the Poo on the internet? lol You may have a faster wittle choo choo but America has more bombs, so keep making the toys that go into our happy meals. Thanks.

                                                  • BeerGrills
                                                    BeerGrills  5 days back

                                                    It took the US six years to build the transcontinental. Now, it takes a decade to lay one overpass in Fresno that goes nowhere.

                                                    When California had to replace a quarter section of the earthquake damaged San Francisco Bay Bridge, it took 11 years and 13 agencies. 82 years ago, our ancestors built four times the length of that replacement in less than 4 years. In 1936, just one agency oversaw the entire bridge project.

                                                    • v t
                                                      v t  5 days back

                                                      Indians don't want to work ..they want everything on this ✋...India mei Kuch start karo to BC sab aa jate hai right lekar ....this is the biggest drawback of democracy ...it act like a hurdle in the development

                                                      • Michael Alexander
                                                        Michael Alexander  5 days back

                                                        What this video fails to point out is most of the workers in China are treated like slaves and they have no workplace safety rules or any worker rules to safeguard them against abuse which is what America had in the late 19th and early 20th century until the US Government and Labor Unions were born in the early 20th century which paved the way for America to have a blue-collar working Middle Class.

                                                        China operates what is called "sweatshops" which means a factory that operates outside of the rules and regulations that should be in place to protect workers against Corporate abuse.

                                                        Typically, sweatshops often have poor working conditions, unfair wages, unreasonable hours, child labor, and a lack of benefits for workers.

                                                        As of October 2018, despite the rapid growth of the Chinese economy in the last few decades, more than 482 million people in China – 36% of the population – live on less than $2 a day. Let that marinate for a moment.

                                                        Thanks to NAFTA (North America (Screw US Workers) Free Trade Agreement, America is slowly inching towards sweatshop status thanks to countries like Sweden who had had companies like IKEA and AAK open operations here who treat American workers like crap.

                                                        I call it the Nordic Whoring of America in which IKEA and AAK have found a sneaky way of keeping wages for American workers in their facilities on US soil very very cheap.

                                                        IKEA opened a plant in a job starved region of Virginia and after getting the local community to pony up more than $12 million in tax breaks and other subsidies (as an inducement for IKEA to locate its factory in this job-starved region of Virginia), it didn’t take long for the company to show its true colors.

                                                        IKEA then hired a union-busting outfit to keep the IAM (International Association of Machinists) from making a run at the employees, they proceeded to drastically slash employee wages and unilaterally modify long-standing work and overtime rules. Needless to say, these measures not only would have been frowned upon by Swedish society, but most of them would’ve been illegal. They would have been in violation of Sweden’s labor laws.

                                                        Now As brutal as the Danville crackdown was, a similar move is occurred at the AAK (AahusKarishamn) oils and fats processing plant, in Louisville, Kentucky. The Louisville plant was formerly owned and operated by Golden Brands, but was sold to the Swedish multinational corporation in July 2011. Despite having had a fairly cooperative relationship with Golden Brands for more than 25 years, once the company changed hands, things turned ugly in a hurry.

                                                        Within months, AAK launched an unprecedented anti-union campaign, one that culminated in—and this is going to sound preposterous—the company circulating a decertification petition, urging the fifty members of Chapter 320 of the National Conference of Firemen and Oilers (NCFO/Local 32BJ SEIU) to voluntarily leave their union.

                                                        Now if you think that was arrogant, it was because had management dared circulate a union decertification petition in Sweden, the company’s executives would’ve been strung up by their Buster Browns and pelted with lingenberries. I have been to Sweden and Sweden has some of the toughest labor laws in the world bar none so these companies left Sweden because of that looking for a more tolerable pasture and they found it in the USA.

                                                        How is that for irony!

                                                        • Sebastian Dreak
                                                          Sebastian Dreak  4 days back

                                                          You may say Chinese workers are not treated as well as American, but slave? You are really kidding.

                                                      • Azathoth Hastur
                                                        Azathoth Hastur  5 days back

                                                        monarchy best form of government

                                                        • AccipiterMagna
                                                          AccipiterMagna  5 days back

                                                          China's railway system is impressive and serves well for connecting parts of the already huge territory.

                                                          • Ryan Lim
                                                            Ryan Lim  5 days back

                                                            if train tracks were dick sizes...

                                                            China be whippin out the long dong

                                                            • Alex C
                                                              Alex C  5 days back

                                                              Chinese rail way infrastructure projects are notoriously prone to failing spectacularly. It kills, maims or harms many. Let alone the human toll in force labour, corruption of the government and effect of the building on the populations wishes.

                                                              • Ulnomad
                                                                Ulnomad  5 days back

                                                                You know what? You can be ignorant and salty toward China all day and stay that way as long as you want, because the Chinese will not give a shit and will keep develop their country. And guess who will be laughing in ten or twenty years.

                                                                • Kerry Xu
                                                                  Kerry Xu  5 days back

                                                                  To the people in the comments arguing over China vs the West and economic development vs human rights, there is a saying:
                                                                  “A patriot is not someone who is always loving the government, but someone who is willing to criticize the government for the benefit of the country.”

                                                                  • b12tly
                                                                    b12tly  4 days back

                                                                    True, both countries have their wrongs and rights.

                                                                • Jeffrey Sun
                                                                  Jeffrey Sun  5 days back

                                                                  We should start a go find me to send all the Americans who are being annoying to China and ride a train

                                                                • Oded
                                                                  Oded  6 days back

                                                                  the Chines make China great again...without bullying and bombing other countries .

                                                                  • DoubleEszpresszo
                                                                    DoubleEszpresszo  3 days back

                                                                    Oh no, the PRC isn't trying to bully anyone over the Spratly Islands.

                                                                • george langan
                                                                  george langan  6 days back

                                                                  I think the other thing with China is that these lines aren't already there. They're trying to build a high speed train system in the UK, and it's just not worth it. Billions of pounds to link London to Sheffield, Manchester, Leeds and Liverpool - yet there's already trains than do that in under 3 hours. If we didn't already have sufficient infrastructure, it'd be a good idea

                                                                  • Countdooku Thedarkside

                                                                    Keep spending trillions on those Zionist resource wars #AmeriKKKa 😁😁😁

                                                                    • elios greek
                                                                      elios greek  6 days back

                                                                      Why they didn't go with MAGLEV ?

                                                                      • joel shem
                                                                        joel shem  6 days back

                                                                        Why don't you build your own in USA and stop taking about China!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

                                                                        • Tommy Lee
                                                                          Tommy Lee  6 days back

                                                                          You should also count the culture as well, especially in holiday season. Planes just aren't able to transport the millions commuters. It just make more sense to build High speed railway network.
                                                                          You haven't seen the old day where people are having hard time travel back in New Year.

                                                                          • latengocomoburro
                                                                            latengocomoburro  6 days back

                                                                            The only things the Chinese are good in are oppression and propaganda.

                                                                          • It's Private
                                                                            It's Private  6 days back

                                                                            Because there is no regulations and it's stated funded. Duh. They don't care about environmental impacts. They have an infinite amount of cheap labor too

                                                                            • George C
                                                                              George C  6 days back

                                                                              LMAO look at this.. This vid just states a truth of how fast Chinese railways are, but still got 1/10 dislikes...what caused that?

                                                                              • Lunar Wave
                                                                                Lunar Wave  6 days back

                                                                                It's pretty much a standard dislike rate for a video with 5m views

                                                                            • lila 123456789
                                                                              lila 123456789  6 days back

                                                                              Ignore this comment as this is a personal msg for someone

                                                                              For michael,
                                                                              We can have fun. Tell me what and where you wanna go. You'll never be lonely again. 🧡