Sunday , April 21 2024

PM calls for focus on developing railroad network

Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh has instructed ministries and other related agencies to quickly prepare for construction of the trans-Vietnam high-speed railroad line.

The PM said Thursday that the preparations would start with the section between Ho Chi Minh City and Can Tho City in the Mekong Delta.

The section will run 174km through Binh Duong, Long An, Tien Giang, and Vinh Long Provinces, according to the feasibility study that the Railway Project Management Board submitted to the Ministry of Transport earlier this month.

Passenger trains will run at a maximum speed of 190 kph and freight trains at 120 kph.

Double tracks of 1,435-mm gauge, the standard for high-speed rail, will be laid at a cost of US$9 billion.

The ministry envisages a 1,559-km north-south route with trains traveling at 320-350 kph to transport passengers, while the existing traditional lines will be used only to transport goods.

It is expected to cost over $58 billion.

Its first phase, to be completed before 2030, will see the construction of two segments: Hanoi-Vinh and Ho Chi Minh City-Nha Trang.

Also on Thursday Chinh said the government has approved an outlay of VND3.1 trillion ($131.6 million) to upgrade the existing north-south railway between Hanoi and HCMC.

He was attending an event to mark the start of work to upgrade the HCMC-Nha Trang section.

Rail transport offers many advantages and plays an important role in socio-economic development and national security, but in recent times it has not received enough attention due to resource constraints, he said.

Investment has been focused on renovating existing routes and not building new ones, he said.

He recently approved plans for 2021-2030 that envisage upgrading the railroad system to effectively exploit existing lines and build new routes along key corridors to connect ports, airports and economic, industrial and international zones.

“This is a very challenging task, requiring great determination and effort,” the PM added.

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