China's first driverless subway line, the Yanfang line in southwest Beijing, is expected to start operations at the end of 2017, the People's Daily reported on August 29.
Operations on the line will be fully automatic, including train departures, door opening and closing, and cleaning, said the report. The trains will only use domestic technology.
China started developing its own fully automatic subway system in 2010 and has mastered the core technologies, said the report.
Beijing subway lines 3, 12, 17, 19 and the new airport line are all under planning and will also operate with completely automated, driverless trains.
It is expected that the total length of fully-automated subway lines in Beijing will reach 300 km by 2020, said the report.
The development and use of domestic operation systems is part of the "Made in China 2025" initiative, which aims to comprehensively upgrade Chinese industry.
The move will also help strengthen China's presence in the global rail transport industry and ensure the security of the country's key infrastructure facilities.
(Xinhua News Agency August 29, 2016)