ASEAN KEY DESTINATIONS
Sino-Thai joint venture for high-speed rail
Transport Ministry inspector-general Chula Sukmanop, who chairs the subcommittee, said the joint venture would have authority to construct the project and hold the right to provide the service for 30 years, with automatic renewal of the service contract for another 20 years.
"The company will have authority to build the project and will own the right to provide the service and can utilise the rail asset to add value. The company will also set up a subsidiary to operate the train service, details of which will be discussed later," he said.
The subcommittee will make the proposal to Supoth Sublom, the ministry's permanent secretary, who chairs the project working committee, either next week or after New Year's for his consideration. Then Thailand will put the details forward for discussion with China. If both agree, the ministry will propose it for Parliament's consideration. If Parliament approves it, Thailand and China are expected to sign the MoU in March or April.
The project will include one year for the study of economic and engineering aspects and four years for construction. The high-speed railway is expected to begin operation in 2015.
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