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Statistical Yearbook for Asia and the Pacific 2009
 
20. Transport

The Asia-Pacific region has been developing stronger international transport links – with increasingly coordinated development of both railway and road networks.

The Intergovernmental Agreement on the Trans-Asian Railway Network entered into force on 11 June 2009. This will facilitate coordinated development of the network, which now comprises 114,300 kilometres of rail lines of international importance. To date, 22 member countries have signed the Agreement and 11 have already become Parties.

Focus for future investment in the network is now on the construction of the missing links which total 8,200 kilometres for which an estimated $25 billion are required. The flagship investment projects will be the building of the $32.3-billion high-speed passenger line between Shanghai and Beijing, due to open in 2012, and the construction of dedicated freight corridors in India with a 1,760-kilometre Eastern corridor between Ludhiana and Sonnagar, at an estimated cost of $3.9 billion, and a 1,485-kilometre Western corridor between Tughlakabad ICD and JNP/Mumbai, at an estimated cost of $3.7 billion.

In 2008, among railway organizations that are taking part in the Trans-Asian Railway project, the largest traffic volumes were in China, India and the Russian Federation. In 2008, Chinese Railways carried 1.46 billion passengers (a 10.4% increase over 2007), and Russian Railways 1.3 billion (a 1.2% increase over 2007). In the freight sector, Chinese Railways reported 1,442.4 billion ton-kilometres (a 4.5% increase over 2007), Indian Railways and Russian Railways 2,420 billion (a 5% increase over 2007).

Not surprisingly rail investment levels are also the highest in these three countries. In 2008, Chinese Railways spent $51 billion on new line construction. Meanwhile, Russian Railways invested $13 billion and Indian Railways $7.7 billion on developing their rail assets. However, changes in investment levels have been the highest in Turkey, where between 2002 and 2008 the proportion of state funding allocated to rail within the transport ministry’s budget rose from 6 to 42%. The Islamic Republic of Iran will also see an increase following the government’s decision to double the railway investment budget between 2007-2008 for 2008-2009.

Roads

The Intergovernmental Agreement on the Asian Highway Network, which entered into force on 4 July 2005, has now been signed by 28 member States and acceded to by one member state. Of these, 24 have become Parties to the Agreement.

Figure 20.1 - Progress in upgrading the Asian Highway, 2004 and 2008

Much progress has been made in developing and upgrading the Asian Highway network. Around 10,000 kilometres of routes have been upgraded – which between 2004 and 2006 reduced the proportion of roads below the class III minimum standard from 16 to 9%. The preliminary assessment of the Asian Highway database (2008), with data received from 20 countries, indicates that, over the period 2007-2008, an additional 10,000 kilometres of the Asian Highway have been upgraded to higher standards including around 1,000 kilometres that have been upgraded to meet the minimum standards. However, about 11,000 kilometres of roads – 8% of the network – still needs to be upgraded to Class III or higher. Most significantly, with the adoption of an Asian Highway link connecting India and Bhutan, by the 3rd Meeting of the Working Group, the Asian Highway network now connects to all the region’s landlocked countries.

Figure 20.2 - Index of change in road density, Asia and the Pacific, 1990-latest available year

As motorization rates continue to rise, leading to higher vehicle densities, there has also been an increase in road traffic accidents. Globally, each year such accidents kill an estimated 1.3 million people and injure 50 million more. The situation is likely to get worse: global road fatalities are forecast to reach 1.9 million by 2020.

In 2007, the estimated road accident death rate for the Asia-Pacific region was 17.3 per 100,000 population, which is slightly below the world average of 18.8. The rates in North America and Europe were much lower, at 13.4 and 10.1 respectively. The highest rates in Asia and the Pacific were reported for Afghanistan, Cook Islands, Kazakhstan, and the Islamic republic of Iran.

Asia’s death rates are very high when considered alongside traffic density. With around 700,000 deaths in 2007, the region accounted for more than half of the world’s road fatalities, even though it only had 43% of the global vehicle population. By 2020, around two thirds of the world’s road traffic fatalities might be in the Asian and Pacific region.

Container handling at ports

The number of containers handled by ports in the Asia-Pacific region increased by 14.3% in 2007, to 257 million twenty-foot equivalent units (TEU). This compares with the increase of world container port handling during the same period of 11.6%, to 478 million TEU. Since 2001, the world’s top five container ports have been in Asia. In 2007, among the world's top-25 container ports in terms of throughput, 17 were in Asia. The Asian economies handling the most container traffic were: China; Singapore; Hong Kong, China; Japan; and the Republic of Korea.

Energy consumption and CO2 emissions

The transport sector is a major consumer of energy – particularly petroleum. It is also one of the major emitters of carbon dioxide which is contributing to global warming. In 2007, the world road, rail and aviation sectors consumed 2,297 million tons of oil equivalent. Of that, the Asia-Pacific region was responsible for only 25.1%, 576 million tons. The bulk of this in the region, 74.2% (427 million tons), was consumed by the road sector, followed by aviation 11.6%, shipping and others 9%, and rail 5.2%.

In 2007, the transport sector in Asia and the Pacific was responsible for 1,642 million tons of CO2 emissions, compared with 1,972 million tons in North America and 1,050 million tons in Europe. Compared with 2006, CO2 emissions from the transport sector in the region increased by about 4.4%. Most of the emissions came from the road sector which in 2007 released 1,323 million tons. In contrast, emissions from aviation and railways were 221 and 67 million tons, respectively.

Railway freight (hundred thousand ton km)

Unit of measure of goods transport which represents the transport of hundred thousand ton of goods by rail over a distance of one kilometre. The distance to be covered is the distance actually run on the considered network (the national network of the reporting country). Aggregates: Calculated by ESCAP as the sum of individual country values. Source: World Bank, World Development Indicators. Online database accessed on 16 September 2009.

Railway passenger kilometre (hundred thousand passenger km)

Unit of measure representing the transport of hundred thousand rail passengers by rail over a distance of one kilometre. The distance to be taken into consideration should be the distance actually run by the passenger on the concerned network. Aggregates: Calculated by ESCAP as the sum of individual country values. Source: World Bank, World Development Indicators. Online database accessed on 16 September 2009.

International marine containers handled (million TEU)

The data represent the volume of containers handled, i.e. both as landed and shipped. The indicator covers intermodal freight containers of 20 feet minimum length, but excluding platform flats. Both international and domestic traffic, and transshipped containers are counted twice. The volume of containers is expressed in 20-foot equivalent units (TEU). The TEU calculations are based only on container length, not height. Aggregates: Calculated by ESCAP as the sum of individual country values. Source: World Bank, World Development Indicators. Online database accessed on 16 September 2009.

Railway density (Km per 1,000 km2)

The length of rail lines divided by the land area expressed in 1,000 km2. Rail lines are the length of railway route available for train service measured in kilometres, irrespective of the number of parallel tracks. Aggregates: Calculated by ESCAP using land area as weight. Source: World Bank, World Development Indicators. Online database accessed on 16 September 2009.

Roads density (Km per 1,000 km2)

The total road network divided by the land area. Total road network includes motorways, highways, and main or national roads, secondary or regional roads, and all other roads measured in kilometres in a country. Aggregates: Calculated by ESCAP using land area as weight. Missing data for some countries and years have been imputed. Source: World Bank, World Development Indicators. Online database accessed on 16 September 2009.

Paved roads (% of total roads)

The share of roads surfaced with crushed stone (macadam) and hydrocarbon binder or bituminized agents, concrete, or cobblestones, expressed as a percentage of the length of all roads. Aggregates: Calculated by ESCAP using land area as weight. Missing data for some countries and years have been imputed. Source: World Bank, World Development Indicators. Online database accessed on 16 September 2009.

Asian highway, primary, class I to III, below class III and total (kilometres)

The Asian Highway network consists of highway routes of international importance within Asia, including highway routes substantially crossing more than one subregion such as: East and North-East Asia, South and South-West Asia, South-East Asia and North and Central Asia; highway routes within subregions including those connecting to neighbouring subregions; and highway routes located within member States which provide access to: (a) capitals; (b) main industrial and agricultural centres; (c) major air, sea and river ports; (d) major container terminals and depots; and (e) major tourist attractions. The total Asian Highway Network is divided into 5 major classes (primary, I, II, III, below III) depending on roads design standards. Primary class refers to access-controlled highways. Accesscontrolled highways are used exclusively by automobiles. Access to the access-controlled highways is at gradeseparated interchanges only. Mopeds, bicycles and pedestrians should not be allowed to enter the accesscontrolled highway in order to ensure traffic safety and the high running speed of automobiles. Class I refers to asphalt or cement concrete roads with 4 or more lanes. Class II refers to asphalt or cement concrete roads with 2 lanes. Class III refers to double bituminous treated roads with 2 lanes and is regarded as the minimum desirable standard Aggregates: Calculated by ESCAP as the sum of individual country values. Source: ESCAP, Transport division. Online database accessed on 10 November 2009.

Passenger cars in use (per 1,000 population)

The number of passenger cars, expressed per 1,000 population. Covers road motor vehicles designed for the conveyance of passengers and seating not more than nine persons including the driver. Taxies, jeep-type vehicles and station wagons are included. Special-purpose vehicles, such as two-wheeled or three-wheeled cycles or motorcycles, trams, trolley-buses, ambulances, hearses, and military vehicles operated by police or other governmental security organizations, are excluded. Aggregates: Calculated by ESCAP using total population as weight. Missing data for some countries and years have been imputed Source: World Bank, World Development Indicators. Online database accessed on 16 September 2009.

Traffic accidents casualties (number, per 100,000 population)

The total number of deaths caused by traffic accidents during a given period divided by the total number of population during the same period, expressed per 100,000 population. Aggregates: Calculated by ESCAP using total population as weight. Source: WHO, Global status report on road safety. Online database accessed on 13 October 2009.

Energy consumption in the transport sector: international and domestic aviation , road, rail, and total (thousand tons of oil equivalent)

Energy consumption in the transport sector covers all transport activity (in mobile engines) regardless of the economic sector to which it is contributing [ISIC Divisions 60, 61 and 62]. It is divided into subsectors: International aviation, domestic aviation, roads, rails, pipeline transport, world marine bunkers, and domestic navigation. Aggregates: Calculated by ESCAP as the sum of individual country values. Source: International Energy Agency. Online database accessed on 10 September 2009.

CO2 emissions from fuel combustion, transport sector (million tons of CO2)

Represents the values of (CO2) emissions from fossil fuel combustion by the transport sector. The emissions are expressed in million tonnes of CO2 and calculated by OECD using International Energy Agency (IEA) energy databases and the default methods and emissions factors from the Revised 1996 IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) Guidelines for National Greenhouse Gas Inventories. International and domestic aviation includes emissions from aviation fuels delivered to aircraft for international aviation bunker and domestic aviation - commercial, private, agricultural, etc. It includes use for purpose other than flying, e.g. bench testing of engines, but not airline use of fuel for road transport; Roads: covers the emissions arising from fuel use in road vehicles, including the use of agricultural vehicles on highways; Rail: covers emission from rail traffic, including industrial railways. Aggregates: Calculated by ESCAP as the sum of individual country values. Source: International Energy Agency. Online database accessed on 5 November 2009.

 
 
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Table 20.1 Railway and maritime freight and passenger traffic

Table 20.2 Railways and roads infrastructure
Table 20.3 Asian highway
Table 20.4 Passenger car and traffic casualties
Table 20.5 Energy consumption by type of transport
Table 20.6 Carbon dioxide emission from fuel combustion by type of transport
Figures gif format
Figure 20.1 - Progress in upgrading the Asian Highway, 2004 and 2008
Figure 20.1 - Progress in upgrading the Asian Highway, 2004 and 2008
Figure 20.2 - Index of change in road density, Asia and the Pacific, 1990-latest available year
Figure 20.2 - Index of change in road density, Asia and the Pacific, 1990-latest available year
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