At the signing ceremony (Photo: Bangkok Post)
 
Bangkok (VNA) – Thailand, Laos and China have signed a Memorandum of Cooperation (MoC) on the development of a rail line connecting Thailand’s Nong Khai province with Laos’s Vientiane capital city.

The MoC was inked on April 25 by Thai Transport Minister Arkhom Termpittayapaisith, Lao Minister of Public Works and Transport Bounchanh Sinthavong and Chinese Deputy Director of the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) Hu Zucai. 

The signing ceremony took place in Beijing, China within the framework of the second Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation, which is held from April 25-27.

The rail tracks between the two sites will be 1.44-metre wide standard gauge. Meanwhile, another one-metre gauge standard rail track will be laid on the Thai side and connected with dual track rail routes at Na Tha station in a district of Nong Khai. The route will form part of a rail network connecting the region with China in the near future.

Arkhom said Thailand and Laos will each be responsible for half of the construction cost of the bridge, which is likely to be completed by the time the Sino-Thai high-speed railway project's second phase from Nakhon Ratchasima to Nong Khai finishes in 2023. 

The high-speed rail scheme between Nakhon Ratchasima to Nong Khai, which stretches 355 kilometres, will be dealt with by Thailand in terms of construction design and China will offer technical assistance during construction. -VNA