China National Highway 109 connects Beijing with Lhasa. It runs westwards from Beijing via Datong, Yinchuan and Xining to Golmud before turning southwest to Lhasa. The portion of the highway from Xining to Lhasa is known as the Qinghai-Tibet Highway. The total length of the route is 3,901 km.
"Tasked with carrying upwards of 85 per cent of goods in and out of Tibet, the Qinghai-Tibet Highway has been dubbed the "Lifeline of Tibet." ... Since it was opened to traffic in 1954, the central government has spent nearly 3 billion yuan (US$362 million) on three major overhauls. It was asphalted in 1985."
The route also holds importance as one of the main coal transport routes in southern Inner Mongolia.
^Gyaco, Former director of the Communications Commission of the Tibet Autonomous Region (2005-01-05). "Roads of change revitalize Tibet". Asia Africa Intelligence Wire, Business Daily Update. Retrieved 2012-04-07.
China National Highway 112 runs around Beijing
Before 2013, Mainland China observed National Highway 228 as Taiwan Ring, composed of several National Expressway (Republic of China) and Taiwan provincial highways, this designation is not recognized by Republic of China (Taiwan). This observation was eventually dropped in new National Highway plans, replaced by Dandong-Dongxing Highway.
A extension plan of the highway system was announced in 2013, including extension of existing highways(101-112, 201-227, 301-330) and new highways (North-South 228-248, East-West 331-361, Connections 501-581). Only small portions of them needs to be constructed from scratch; most of the new highways would be upgraded provincial/county highways.