China-ASEAN rail link development on track

Updated On: Mar 08, 2010

Plans are advancing for a rail network that would eventually link Singapore to Kunming, China through six Southeast Asian nations.

There are still gaps in the various national lines that would link the countrys, and many parts of the current track are decrepit. Currently, critical gaps are being filled in Cambodia. The ADB as well as Australia and Malaysia are contributing funding for the project, which is expected to be completed by 2013.

Other significant gaps between the Singapore-Cambodia line and the Vietnam-China line still remain. Cost estimates for construction are US$600-$700 million.

A free trade agreement between China and ASEAN went into effect on January 1, 2010, removing tariffs on most goods traded between the 11 nations.

Full steam ahead for rail link in south-east Asia [Financial Times, 8 Mar 2010]
Push for dual-track railways continues [The Nation (Thailand), 8 Mar 2010]