Pakistan - Transportation

Railways are a major carrier of passenger and freight traffic. In 2002, Pakistan Railways operated 8,163 km (5,072 mi) of track.

Also in 2002, Pakistan's road system totaled 247,811 km (153,989 mi) of roads, of which 141,252 km (887,774 mi) were paved. Road traffic drives on the left. The 800 km (500 mi) Karakoram highway, built jointly by Pakistan and China to connect Isla¯mābād with western China, was opened in 1979. In November, 1997, the Lahore-Isla¯mābād motorway was opened for traffic. There were 391,400 passenger cars and 208,100 commercial vehicles in use in 2000. The road network carries 85% of all goods and passengers moving within the country. The harbor of Kara¯chi, which provides Pakistan with its major port, covers an area of 6.5 sq km (2.5 sq mi) and handles over 10.5 million tons annually. Port Qasim, 22 km (14 mi) south of Kara¯chi, was developed during the 1970s to help handle the increased shipping traffic. As of 2002, Pakistan's merchant marine operated 17 oceangoing vessels, totaling 241,832 GRT (367,093 DWT).

Pakistan had 120 airports in 2001, of which 87 had paved runways. Kara¯chi Airport is the main international terminus. As of July 2001, along with the government-run Pakistan International Airlines (PIA), two private carriers, Aero Asia and Shehann Air International (SAI), were operating on domestic as well as flights to Europe, the US, and the Far East. In 2001, 4,871,400 passengers were carried in scheduled domestic and international flights.

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