Railways to better link SW China with SE Asia

17:01, May 31, 2011      

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At a tranquil courtyard in a remote village on the border of China and Myanmar, Ming Yong reviews his market research tour in Singapore and Thailand one month ago.

"Once the rail project is finished, the villagers here can visit Singapore directly by train," says Ming, a businessman from the border city of Ruili in China's southwestern Yunnan Province.

The railway he mentions is the west line of the transnational railway passing through Yunnan Province, which is also a vital component of the pan-Asian railway network.

The China Railway Group Limited (China Railway) announced late last week that it had signed an agreement with Myanmar to jointly build the railway that would extend through the southeast Asian nation.

This section of railway will run from Ruili to Myanmar's western port city of Kyaukphyu, with a length of 810 km.

"With the railway, our products like rice and vegetables can be delivered to neighboring countries more easily," Ming says.

Having invested in a farm product market, a vegetable base and a rice processing plant, Ming is confident about the prospect of his export-oriented business because of the newly-planned railway.

Situated in the southwest of China, Yunnan Province borders Vietnam, Laos and Myanmar with a boundary length of 4,000 km. At the beginning of this century, railway length in the province only took up three percent of the country's total.

China is building a transnational railway network that reaches into southeast Asia from Kunming, capital city of Yunnan. Two other lines are under construction in addition to the Ruili-Kyaukphyu railway.
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Source: Xinhua
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