Illustrative photo (Photo: chinadaily.com.cn)
 
Bangkok (VNA) – The Thailand-China railway project will give priority to hiring Thai workers as up to 75 percent of its budget or about 136 billion THB will be used for the work, according to Thailand’s Transport Ministry Permanent Secretary Chatchai Thipsunawee.

He was cited by local media on June 19 as saying that the remaining 25 percent or about 43,000 million TBH will be used to employ Chinese personnel.

The official affirmed that both Thailand and China will benefit from technology transfer and knowledge exchanges in the project. 

Earlier, Thai Prime Minister Prayut Chan-ocha used Article 11 of the Constitution to override obstacles to the 250km high-speed railway linking Bangkok and Nakhon Ratchasima, which will be further extended to Nong Khai on the Thailand-Laos border. 

In another development, President of the Engineering Institute of Thailand (EIT) Thanet Veerasiri said the institute agreed in principle with the Government’s wish to speed up the project in cooperation with the Chinese Government, but has reservations over some aspects of the deal.

Thailand’s Finance Ministry forecast that the country’s GDP will expand by 4 percent in 2017 thanks to improved economic conditions. 

Earlier, the figure is expected at 3.6 percent and would reach 4 percent if public investments, especially five railway projects are implemented and consumption stimulate package for low-income earners proves effective. -VNA