The last time a Chinese head of state has been this high-profile about the trains was probably Mao, although the former Premier, Wen, was also keep on HSR, having taken a ride on the very first Beijing-Shanghai HSR train.
Now, Xi’s getting in on the act. National media reports that President Xi Jinping gave the Kunming South (Kunmingnan) Railway Station a visit on 20 January 2015. This comes on his recent visit to Yunnan, where he also visited members of local ethnic groups.
China’s new development sees itself focus again on the Silk Road, which will also feature a series of railways (especially HSR lines) leading outside of China. Kunming is planning 8 railway lines to the rest of China, as well as 4 such lines to countries outside of China. The hub for this will be the Kunming South (Kunmingnan) Railway Station.
The president was particularly interested in how close the metro connection would be inside the new HSR hub. There is a plan to connect a future spur line of Line 1 to the south station (at present, the main station is connected to Line 1, but the spur to the south station is still in the works). Line 1 there would run mostly north-south from central Kunming to the southern suburbs.
Two relatively confirmed HSR lines for Kunming South station are the Shanghai-Kunming HSR (open at present from Shanghai to as far as the boundary between Hu’nan and Guizhou provinces) and a planned line from Kunming to Taiwan.