Thematic Map > Railways - World

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Definition: This entry states the total route length of the railway network and of its component parts by gauge, which is the measure of the distance between the inner sides of the load-bearing rails. The four typical types of gauges are: broad, standard, narrow, and dual. Other gauges are listed under note. Some 60% of the world's railways use the standard gauge of 1.4 m (4.7 ft). Gauges vary by country and sometimes within countries. The choice of gauge during initial construction was mainly in response to local conditions and the intent of the builder. Narrow-gauge railways were cheaper to build and could negotiate sharper curves, broad-gauge railways gave greater stability and permitted higher speeds. Standard-gauge railways were a compromise between narrow and broad gauges.

Description: The map displayed here shows how Railways varies by country. The shade of the country corresponds to the magnitude of the indicator. The darker the shade, the higher the value.

Source: CIA World Factbook - Unless otherwise noted, information in this page is accurate as of January 1, 2018

See also: Railways bar chart

 

CountryRailways (km)Year
United States293,5642014
China124,0002017
Russia87,1572014
Canada77,9322014
India68,5252014
Germany43,4682014
Australia36,9682014
Argentina36,9172014
Brazil29,8502014
France29,6402014
Japan27,3112015
Ukraine21,7332014
South Africa20,9862014
Italy20,1822014
Poland19,2312015
United Kingdom16,8372015
Spain16,1022014
Mexico15,3892014
Kazakhstan14,1842014
Sweden14,1272016
Turkey12,0082014
Pakistan11,8812015
Romania11,2682014
Iran8,4842014
Cuba8,3672015
Indonesia8,1592014
Hungary8,0492014
Korea, North7,4352014
Chile7,2822014
Sudan7,2512014
Finland5,9232015
Austria5,8002014
Switzerland5,6522014
Belarus5,5282014
Saudi Arabia5,4102016
Bulgaria5,1142014
Egypt5,0852014
Burma5,0312008
Mozambique4,7872014
Tanzania4,5672014
Uzbekistan4,3042016
Norway4,2502014
New Zealand4,1282014
Thailand4,1272017
Congo, Democratic Republic of the4,0072014
Algeria3,9732014
Korea, South3,8742015
Serbia3,8092015
Kenya3,8062014
Nigeria3,7982014
Slovakia3,6262016
Belgium3,5922014
Bolivia3,5042014
Denmark3,4762017
Zimbabwe3,4272014
Ireland3,2372014
Zambia3,1262014
Portugal3,0752014
Netherlands3,0582016
Turkmenistan2,9802014
Azerbaijan2,9442017
Angola2,8522014
Croatia2,7222014
Namibia2,6282014
Vietnam2,6002014
Greece2,5482014
Bangladesh2,4602014
Iraq2,2722014
Latvia2,2392008
Tunisia2,1732014
Estonia2,1462016
Colombia2,1412015
Morocco2,0672014
Syria2,0522014
Peru1,8542014
Malaysia1,8512014
Mongolia1,8152016
Lithuania1,7682014
Uruguay1,6732016
Taiwan1,5972014
Sri Lanka1,4472014
Georgia1,3632014
Israel1,2502014
Uganda1,2442014
Slovenia1,2292014
Moldova1,1712014
Guinea1,0862017
Philippines9952015
Cameroon9872014
Ecuador9652014
Bosnia and Herzegovina9652014
Ghana9472014
Senegal9062017
Botswana8882014
Madagascar8362014
Guatemala8002014
Armenia7802014
Malawi7672014
Mauritania7282014
Macedonia6992017
Honduras6992014
Tajikistan6802014
Albania6772015
Cote d'Ivoire6602008
Ethiopia6592017
Gabon6492014
Cambodia6422014
Burkina Faso6222014
Fiji5972008
Mali5932014
Togo5682014
Congo, Republic of the5102014
Jordan5092014
Dominican Republic4962014
Kyrgyzstan4702014
Venezuela4472014
Benin4382014
Liberia4292008
Lebanon4012017
Eritrea3062014
Swaziland3012014
Costa Rica2782014
Luxembourg2752014
Montenegro2502014
Djibouti972017
Panama772014
Nepal532014
Saint Kitts and Nevis502008
Paraguay302014
El Salvador132014
Liechtenstein92008