The line enables passengers travelling from cities in the northeast such as Changchun, Shenyang, and Qinhuangdao to reach destinations in southeastern China without passing through the capital.

The new railway is designed for 250km/h operation, although initially trains will be limited to a maximum of 200km/h.

Work began on the Yuan 24bn ($US 3.7bn) project in March 2010 and the line was originally due to open in 2013, but construction suffered a number of delays.