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China expects smooth railway cooperation with Indonesia, Thailand

Xinhua  10:36, March 29, 2016  

BEIJING, March 28 -- China on Monday called for close cooperation with Indonesia and Thailand to ensure smooth progress of railway projects in the two Southeast Asian countries.

China and the two countries have made consensus on building the railway projects on the basis of mutual benefit and win-win cooperation, Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hong Lei said at a regular news briefing, referring to railways linking Jakarta with Bandung, and Bangkok with Nakhon Ratchasima.

Hong said that departments of the three countries have been keeping close communication on the progress of the projects.

"We will push for the smooth construction of the railways to benefit the Indonesian and Thai people and to improve economic development, people-to-people exchanges and connectivity in the region," the spokesperson said.

Last October, China Railway signed a deal with Indonesian state-owned enterprises to form a joint venture to construct and operate the Jakarta-Bandung railway, with the latter to control 60 percent of the stake.

The groundbreaking ceremony for the railway was held on Jan. 21. Once completed, the 150-km railway will cut travel time from Jakarta to Bandung from more than three hours at present to less than 40 minutes.

In 2014, Thailand and China signed documents on the development of Thailand's transportation infrastructure. According to Thai sources, the Bangkok-Nakhon Ratchasima railway will purchase Chinese trains and use Chinese technology and signal systems. The railway will operate at top speeds of 160 to 180 kilometers per hour.

(Editor:Yao Chun,Bianji)