Hanoi (VNA) – China and Laos reached a deal on the construction of a cross-border railway in order to boost bilateral economic cooperation and regional growth on November 13.

Under the agreement, the railroad will stretch 418km to link the two countries’ border areas, Mohan port of China and Laos’ Boten port and capital Vientiane city, with the maximum speed of 160km per hour.

Joint investment totals 40 billion yuan (6.28 billion USD), with 70 percent from China and 30 percent from Laos.

Wang Xiaotao, deputy head of China’s National Development and Reform Commission, expects the railway to start operating in 2020 and said it will spur economic and social development in Laos and generate fresh impetus to China's southwestern region.

The railway will also reach Thailand and Malaysia in the future, Wang said.-VNA