The International Union of Railways’ (UIC) statistics for 2010 have revealed that overall growth of passenger rail traffic has increased by 3.5% worldwide.
This was ‘boosted by the development of rail traffic in Asia’ and in particular, India, the statistics revealed.
Passenger transport growth worldwide remained steady on the whole. India saw an 8% increase, although China saw only a 0.4% increase on the year before, despite their growing high speed network.
Passenger transport in Russia saw a decline of 9%, whilst passenger traffic remained stable in Europe.
Africa also remained steady with a 0.2% increase in passenger rail travel.
There was a 3.4% growth in the freight sector worldwide, confirming economic and trade recovery.
The data showed that Indian Railways’ freight traffic showed the highest growth of 9% for the period.
With an 8% increase from 2009, Russia’s ‘extremely dynamic’ freight sector represents almost a quarter of all freight transported worldwide.
The United States and Canada notched up 4% growth whilst representing over 25% of total tonnage transported worldwide, whereas China, which represents 70% of the total tonnage in Asia (and Oceania), increased its traffic by just 3%.
Kazakhstan Railways’ freight growth was at 8% and the rest of Europe showed an increase of 7%, a trend which has continued through the early part of 2011.
UIC is an international organisation working to promote rail transport globally in order to meet the challenges of mobility and sustainable development; it has 197 members across all five continents.