BEIJING, July 24 (Xinhua) -- Upcoming reforms will completely open China's railway construction market, according to a statement released Wednesday after an executive meeting of the State Council presided over by Premier Li Keqiang.
Reforms concerning investment and financing in the sector will be sped up, covering the areas of planning, multi-channel investment, market-based operations and policy coordination, the statement said.
A railway development fund will be established using government investment and social capital, the statement said, adding that local regions and social capital will have ownership and management rights for inter-city railway links and municipal rail links.
Multiple reforms are being made in the sector following the separation of the Ministry of Railways in March into administrative and commercial arms, a move that was made to reduce bureaucracy and improve efficiency.
Government investment and the railway system's financing have long been the primary sources of capital for railway construction. However, these limited channels have become increasingly unable to meet demand for capital.
Analysts said the sector should diversify and attract more social capital for construction projects by breaking up monopolies and investment barriers.
According to the statement, the government will prioritize railway construction in central and west China, as well as poor parts of the country, in order to boost urbanization and coordinated development between regions.
The government also plans to make efficient use of land resources in building new railways. During the 2011-2015 period, major railway construction projects will be initiated in a timely way and progress according to plan, the statement said.