Transport > Railways > A note: Countries Compared

DEFINITION: This entry states the total route length of the railway network and of its component parts by gauge: broad, dual, narrow, standard, and other.
Brazil in addition to the interurban routes itemized above, Brazil has 247.8 km of suburban railway consisting of 170.8 km of 1.600-m gauge (75 km electrified) and 77 km of 1.000-m gauge (1999 est.)
Canada Canada has two major transcontinental freight railway systems: Canadian National (privatized November 1995) and Canadian Pacific Railway; passenger service is provided by the government-operated firm VIA, which has no trackage of its own (2000 est.)
Cote d'Ivoire an additional 600 km of this railroad extends into Burkina Faso, ending at Kaya, north of Ouagadougou (2000 est.)
Cuba in addition to the 4,807 km of standard-gauge track in public use, 7,162 km of track is in private use by sugar plantations; about 90% of the private use track is standard gauge and the rest is narrow gauge (2000 est.)
Democratic Republic of the Congo severely reduced route-distance in use because of damage to facilities by civil strife (2000 est.)
Djibouti Djibouti and Ethiopia plan to revitalize the century-old railroad that links their capitals by 2003 (2001 est.)
El Salvador length of operational route is reduced to 283 km by disuse and lack of maintenance (2001 est.)
Eritrea links Ak'ordat and Asmara with the port of Massawa; nonoperational since 1978 except for about a 5 km stretch that was reopened in Massawa in 1994; rehabilitation of the remainder and of the rolling stock is under way (2001 est.)
Ethiopia in 1998, Djibouti and Ethiopia announced plans to revitalize the century-old railroad that links their capitals and since then Ethiopia has expended considerable effort to repair and maintain the lines; in 2001, Ethiopia and Sudan agreed to build a line from Ethiopia to Port Sudan (2000 est.)
Fiji belongs to the government-owned Fiji Sugar Corporation (1995)
Germany since privatization in 1994, Deutsche Bahn AG (DBAG) no longer publishes details of the track it owns; in addition to the DBAG system there are 102 privately owned railway companies which own approximately 3,000 to 4,000 km of track (2001 est.)
Guatemala much of the railway is inoperable (2001 est.)
Guyana all dedicated to ore transport (2001 est.)
Haiti privately owned industrial line; closed in early 1990s (2001 est.)
Holy See (Vatican City) a spur of the Italian Railways system, serving Rome's Saint Peter's station (2001 est.)
Hong Kong connects to China railway system at Hong Kong-China border (2001)
Hungary Hungary and Austria jointly manage the cross-border, standard-gauge railway connecting Gyor, Sopron, and Ebenfurt (Gysev railroad) which has a route length of about 101 km in Hungary and 65 km in Austria (2001)
Iran broad-gauge track is employed at the borders with Azerbaijan and Turkmenistan which have broad-gauge rail systems; 41 km of the standard-gauge, electrified track is in suburban service at Tehran (2001)
Kenya the line connecting Nairobi with the port of Mombasa is the most important in the country
Lebanon entire system is unusable because of damage in civil war (2001)
Liberia in 1989, Liberia had three rail systems owned and operated by foreign steel and financial interests in conjunction with the Liberian Government; one of these, the Lamco Railroad, closed in 1989 after iron ore production ceased; the other two were shut down by the civil war; large sections of the rail lines have been dismantled; approximately 60 km of railroad track was exported for scrap (2001)
Libya Libya has had no railroad in operation since 1965, all previous systems having been dismantled; current plans are to construct a 1.435-m standard-gauge line from the Tunisian frontier to Tripoli and Misratah, then inland to Sabha, center of a mineral-rich area, but there has been little progress; other plans made jointly with Egypt would establish a rail line from As Sallum, Egypt, to Tobruk with completion originally set for mid-1994; Libya signed contracts with two private companies - Bahne of Egypt and Jez Sistemas Ferroviarios of Spain - in 1998 for the supply of crossings and pointwork (2001)
Liechtenstein owned, operated, and included in statistics of Austrian Federal Railways (2001)
Mali linked to Senegal's rail system through Kayes (2001)
Mauritania owned and operated by government mining company (2001)
Nauru gauge unknown; used to haul phosphates from the center of the island to processing facilities on the southwest coast (2001)
Nepal all in Kosi close to Indian border (2001)
Nicaragua carries mostly passengers from Chichigalpa to Ingenio San Antonio (2001)
Nigeria years of neglect of both the rolling stock and the right-of-way have seriously reduced the capacity and utility of the system; a project to restore Nigeria's railways is now underway (2001)
Paraguay there are 470 km of various gauges that are privately owned
Puerto Rico rural, narrow-gauge system for hauling sugarcane; no passenger service (2001)
Republic of Macedonia a 56-km extension of the Kumanovo-Beljakovce line to the Bulgarian border at Gyueshevo is under construction (2001)
Russia an additional 63,000 km of broad gauge routes serve specific industries and are not available for common carrier use (2002)
Serbia and Montenegro during the 1999 Kosovo conflict, the Serbian rail system suffered significant damage due to bridge destruction; many rail bridges have been rebuilt; Montenegrin rail lines remain intact (2001)
Sierra Leone Sierra Leone has no common carrier railroads; the existing railroad is private and used on a limited basis while the mine at Marampa is closed (2001)
Singapore there is also a 83 km mass transit system with 48 stations
South Africa in addition, South Africa has an electrified 1.065-m gauge commuter rail system, with a total length of 1,254 km, which serves Johannesburg-Pretoria, Cape Town, Durban, East London, and Port Elizabeth (2001)
Sudan the 1.067-m line from Khartoum to Port Sudan carries over two-thirds of Sudan's rail traffic; the 0.600-m gauge system serves Sudan's cotton plantations with over 120 collecting stations (2001)
Suriname Suriname railroads are not in operation (2001)
Swaziland includes 71 km which are not in use (2001)
Switzerland Swiss railways are virtually all electrified (2001)
Syria rail link between Syria and Iraq replaced in 2000 (2001)
Taiwan in addition to the above routes in common carrier service, there are several thousand kilometers of 1.067-m gauge routes that are dedicated to industrial use (2001)
Tajikistan includes only lines in common carrier service; lines dedicated to particular industries are excluded (2001)
Tanzania the Tanzania-Zambia Railway Authority (TAZARA), which operates 1,860 km of 1.067-m narrow gauge track between Dar es Salaam and Kapiri Mposhi in Zambia (of which 969 km are in Tanzania and 891 km are in Zambia) is not a part of Tanzania Railways Corporation; because of the difference in gauge, this system does not connect to Tanzania Railways (2001)
Uganda a program to rehabilitate the railroad is underway (2001)
Ukraine these data do not include railroads dedicated to serving industry and not in common carrier service (2001)
United Kingdom all 1.600-m gauge track is in common carrier service in Northern Ireland (1996)
United States represents the aggregate length of roadway of all line-haul railroads including an estimate for Class II and III railroads (1998)
Uruguay of the total route length, 461 km have been taken out of service and 460 km are in only partial use; moreover, not all lines offer passenger service (2001)
Venezuela 248 km of the existing system are privately owned; passenger services are nonexistent; however, a National Railways Plan, intended to provide a significant railway system, has been initiated (2001)
Zambia the total includes 891 km of the Tanzania-Zambia Railway Authority (TAZARA), which operates 1,860 km of 1.067-m narrow gauge track between Dar es Salaam and Kapiri Mposhi where it connects to the Zambia Railways system; TAZARA is not a part of the Zambia Railways system; Zambia Railways assets are scheduled for concessioning (2002)
Zimbabwe includes the 318 km Bulawaya-Beitbridge Railway Company line (2001)


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