Development of Tibet’s transport network

By: Liu Fang, Zhu Shan,China Tibet News
Updated: Sept. 03, 2020

Transportation plays an important role in economic development and social stability. It is also crucial for the building of a moderately prosperous society.

Year 2019 was the 70th anniversary of the founding of the People's Republic of China and the 60th anniversary of democratic reform of southwest China's Tibet Autonomous Region. Tibet made significant achievements in transportation. Rapid development of transportation resolved the difficulties faced by farmers and herdsmen in their traveling, accelerated the adjustment of industrial structure, and promoted the rural economic development. All these maintained the rapid, stable and sustained development of regional economy and society.
As a 3D traffic network comes into being, the traffic becomes more convenient.
Now, Tibet has 100,000 km of road. Qinghai-Tibet railway and Lhasa-Xigaze railway have opened to traffic. Lhasa-Nyingchi railway is under construction. There are five airports in the region (Gongkar Airport, Bangda Airport, Menling Airport, Gunsa Airport and Heping Airport). A total of 101 air routes operated by 11 airlines link Tibet with 51 cities of other provinces.
Last year, Tibet invested a total of 45.8 billion yuan RMB in transportation, of which 25.7 billion yuan RMB, 1.27 billion yuan RMB and 4.7 billion yuan RMB were poured into the construction of main roads, rural roads and border roads respectively. The construction of infrastructure in road transportation still plays a significant role in ensuring the stable investment and economic growth.  
In terms of high-grade highways, Mila Mount Tunnel and Lhasa-Nyingchi high-grade highway have opened to traffic. The design of the highway linking Lhasa to Xigaze airport has been approved by the Ministry of Transport and its dominant engineering is in full swing. The preliminary design of highway linking Xigaze to Gyirong County has begun.
Zhu Jiaola Mount Tunnel, Aila Mount Tunnel and the No. 563 national highway from Sa'gya Bridge to Sa’gya County opened to traffic, which made the traffic more convenient. The rebuilt No. 559 highway linking Bomi County to Medog County was put into use, marking all 74 counties of Tibet having access to tarmac roads. The rebuild construction of No. 318 national highway linking Zham Town to Youyi Bridge, Youyi Bridge and Rasog Bridge was completed, enhancing capability for custom clearance in Zham Port.
The opening of the Qinghai-Tibet Railway in 2006 ended Tibet's history of no train. The opening of Lhasa-Xigaze railway in 2014 changed the transportation situation in southwest Tibet. At present, the construction of Lhasa-Nyingchi railway, Tibet's first electrified railway, is under construction, which will improve the traffic of east Tibet and inject new energy into the local economic growth.
During the period of last Spring Festival and Tibetan New Year, Qinghai-Tibet Group Co, Ltd., focused on the effective transportation of goods to ensure people of all ethnic groups could spend a happy holiday.
According to the Tibet branch of the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC), as of December 29, 2019, the annual passenger throughput of civil aviation in southwest China's Tibet Autonomous Region exceeded 5.71 million, realizing an increase of 7.57%, which was a new milestone of Tibet's civil aviation. The highest daily passenge volume reached 21,913.