Rail offers cost-effective transport of large quantities of cargo over long distances. It is especially good for cargoes with high volume and low value, such as coal, timber and grain. Heavy industries are traditionally linked with rail transport systems. Once the cars have been assembled or the passengers have boarded, trains can offer a high capacity service at a reasonable speed. For instance, a 10-car freight train can carry as many as 600 trucks. Besides, rail transport is one of the most energy-efficient modes of land transport. Environmental and safe considerations also favor rail over road transport.
In several countries such as China, India and Japan, rail transportation accounts for the majority of interurban passenger transportation. Among developed countries, there are differences in the preference of rail transportation. For Europe, rail transportation is still very important, mainly for carrying passengers, but it has declined over the last decades. High-speed passenger rail projects are, however, improving in popularity. For North America, rail transportation is strictly confined to freight, with passengers playing a marginal role only.
That’s all for my speech, thank you so much for listening.