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China's high-speed rail network has come under fire for being unsafe and unprofitable. The official overseeing the project was discharged for corruption. With reports circulating about shoddy construction practices, one has to feel a little concerned for Chinese commuters. Here's this report.
China's massive high-speed rail network is being called unsafe, unprofitable and corrupt.
The Chinese Railways Ministry Chief, Liu Zhijun was in charge of the construction of the railway, spanning almost 8,100 miles across China and reportedly costing $395 billion U.S. dollars.
Liu was fired In February. He's now behind bars and under investigation for (quote) "severe violations of discipline." During his seven years as chief, he embezzled a personal fortune of $120 billion U.S. dollars.
Corruption is not the only problem plaguing China's railways. Experts say shoddy materials were used to cut costs. According to a source for the New York Times, the concrete bases for the tracks were so cheaply made, with insufficient hardening agents that the tracks would warp in five years.
On top of the safety risks, high-speed trains are more expensive. A passenger on the Shanghai-Hangzhou line last year said first class was completely empty and he was the only passenger in his second-class cabin.
With high construction costs, safety risks and dissatisfied passengers, the debt-ratio of the Chinese regime's railway ministry, which stands at about 70 percent, could face an even more dismal future.