Friday , July 19 2024

PM requests Japan’s help for north-south high speed railway

Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh on Friday requested the Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC) to support Vietnam in building a north-south high speed railway.

Receiving JBIC chairman Maeda Tadashi in Hanoi on Friday, Chinh said development of the rail route can be done in multiple parts and lessons learned throughout the process.

Besides the railway project, Chinh also requested Japan and the JBIC to catalyze new-generation ODA cooperation projects between the two countries and support Vietnam in deploying strategic infrastructure projects, especially in traffic, climate change, digital transformation and increasing medical capabilities.

Chinh further requested Japan and the JBIC to help Vietnam gain access to the $10 billion aid that the Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida had pledged at the COP26 conference so that the country could achieve its net zero emissions target by 2050.

The PM said he hoped JBIC would encourage Japanese businesses to shift investments and diversify their supply chains to Vietnam, making Japan a top investor in the country.

Tadashi said he highly valued Vietnam’s commitment to and actions on environmental issues. He said the JBIC wished to cooperate with Vietnam in multiple fields.

The Ministry of Transport has proposed a 1,559 km north-south high speed railway line with speeds of 320-350 kph. This high speed railway would be used to transport passengers, while the current traditional railway routes would be used to transport goods.

The total investment for the high speed rail is expected to be over $58 billion. The first phase of the project, to be completed before 2030, would see the construction of two segments: Hanoi-Vinh and Ho Chi Minh City-Nha Trang.

At 320 kph, it would only take an hour or so to get from Hanoi to Nghe An’s Vinh Town, while a flight would take around three hours. It would take around 4.2 hours to get from Hanoi to Nha Trang, also faster than flying for 4.5 hours. The high speed train would take 5.5 hours to travel from Hanoi to HCMC, while a flight would take 4.5 hours.

Ticket prices for the high-speed railway should be roughly 75 percent of an average plane ticket on the same route, officals have said.

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