World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Private railway

Article Id: WHEBN0000193307
Reproduction Date:

Title: Private railway  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Sanyo Electric Railway, Keisei Chiba Line, Tōbu Kiryū Line, Hankyu, Tōbu Nikkō Line
Collection: Railways by Type
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Private railway

A private railroad is a railroad run by a private business entity (usually a corporation but not need be), as opposed to a railroad run by a public sector.


  • Japan 1
  • United States 2
  • People's Republic of China 3
  • See also 4
  • References 5


In Japan, private sector railway (私鉄 or 民鉄 Shitetsu or Mintetsu), commonly simply private railway, refers to a corporation (Kabushiki kaisha), but may be any type of private business entity. Although Japan Railways Group companies are also corporations, they are not classified as private railways because of their unique status as the primary successors of the Japanese National Railways (JNR). Voluntary sector railways (semi-public) are additionally not classified as shitetsu due to their origins as rural, money-losing JNR lines that have since been transferred to local possession, in spite of their organizational structures being corporatized.

Among private railways in Japan, 16 companies are categorized as "major", these same companies also utilize quadruple track and skip-stop services like varying hierarchies of express trains. They are often profitable and tend to be less expensive per passenger-kilometer than JR trains that also run less dense regional routes, and assumed a heavy burden of the former JNR debt. Private railways corporations in Japan also run and generate profits from a variety of other businesses that depend on the traffic generated through their transit systems: hotels, department stores, supermarkets, resorts, and real estate development and leasing.

Japan railways whether government run, semi-public, or private business, are regulated by the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism. They may join unions such as National Railway Workers' Union, but their abilities to call a strike is severely limited by government legislation; there is very little tolerance for railway work stoppage. Employees of private railways may legally strike but its unheard of in Japan. There have only been two notable railroad strikes in Japanese history, both by employees of government run entities (government employees are legally barred from striking): One in 1973,[1] and a major strike protesting the breakup (and layoffs of tens of thousands of employees) of JNR in 1985.

Though private railways such as industrial railways have existed in Japan they are not deemed shitetsu nor mintetsu in Japanese, as their purpose is not public transit.

United States

In the United States, a private railroad is a railroad owned by a company and serves only that company, and does not hold itself out as a "common carrier" (i.e., it does not provide rail transport services for the general public).

People's Republic of China

In 2006, the Luoding Railway (simplified Chinese: 罗定铁路; traditional Chinese: 羅定鐵路; pinyin: Luódìng Tiělù) was sold to Shenzhen China Technology Industry Group Corporation Limited (simplified Chinese: 深圳市中技实业 (集团) 有限公司; traditional Chinese: 深圳市中技實業 (集團)有限公司) through auction, and became the first and only one private railway in the People's Republic of China.

See also


  1. ^
This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Project Gutenberg are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.