Bangkok (VNA) – The Transport Ministry of Thailand is cooperating with its Malaysian partner to develop a high-speed railway system connecting four members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).

According to local media, Chayatan Phromsorn, permanent secretary for transport, has had a meeting with his Malaysian counterpart Isham Ishak and companies from the neighbouring country to discuss ways of cooperating to build a railway system linking the two countries.

Malaysia earlier requested a high-speed rail connection with Thailand as a transit point to link up with Laos and China.

Both sides have exchanged information on the project and Malaysia agreed with the idea of Thailand forming a joint working panel to discuss such a railway system connecting China, Laos, Thailand, Malaysia, and Singapore.

The panel has been instructed to have a plan in place by the time ASEAN next meets to discuss transportation issues.

The Malaysian officials arrived after Transport Minister Saksayam Chidchob issued an order to follow up on the Feburary 25 talks between Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha and Malaysian Prime Minister Ismail on the issue.

Minister Saksayam recently said that the Thai Ministry of Transport is developing a high-speed railway in the south to connect the five countries.

As scheduled, authorities of some ministries of Thailand will visit Vientiane later this month to discuss the extension of the China-Lao railway to Thailand. Negotiations will take place from August 30 to September 1, focusing on the connection of Vientiane of Laos and Nong Khai of Thailand./.