How Is Vietnam’s High-Speed Railway?
After the Ben Thanh – Suoi Tien Metro line, a project that will put a stop in Thu Duc City (HCMC) is the North – South high-speed railway. The project is expected to be built within 16 years from 2025 to 2041 in 3 phases with a length of 1508km stretching across the country.
The Ben Thanh – Suoi Tien Metro Line is only 20km long, but it took 10 years to construct.
Is it possible for this project?
Investment Capital Over 61 Billion USD
According to the proposal of the consulting consortium, the high-speed railway will have a length of 1508km connecting Ngoc Hoi station (Hanoi) and Thu Thiem station (Ho Chi Minh City). The design speed is up to 250km/h and the operating speed is 180-225km/h. Unlike the existing railway with a gauge of 1000mm, the new line will have a gauge of 1435mm according to international standards. The project is divided into 3 phases with an investment capital of USD 61.67 billion, specifically the phases are as follows:
- Phase 1 (2025-2031): Site clearance and construction of Thu Thiem – Nha Trang railway
- Phase 2 (2031-2038): Hanoi – Da Nang railway
- Phase 3 (2038-2041): Da Nang – Nha Trang railway
Construction and design plan of North – South high-speed railway
The construction proposal has been agreed upon and is currently in the pre-implementation study phase. 12 years ago, the high-speed rail project was proposed but not approved by the National Assembly. After that, the Ministry of Transport continued to propose a construction plan with a total length of 1559km, a design speed of 350km/h for passenger operation and upgrade the existing railway to carry goods with a total estimated investment over 58 billion USD, but it is not possible and wastes train capacity.
Proposal for Vietnam – Japan
Cooperation Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh twice asked Japan to consider cooperating in research and development of the North-South high-speed railway project. The offer has been received by the Japanese side and is being considered. Vietnam has always been an important ODA partner of Japan. Particularly in Ho Chi Minh City, the mark of Japan’s ODA cooperation and investment is present in a series of infrastructure projects such as:
- 1999-2012: East-West Avenue
- 2005-2011: Thu Thiem Tunnel
- 2008 – present: Ben Thanh – Suoi Tien Metro Line …
Thu Thiem Tunnel – the first river tunnel in Vietnam, opening a connection for Thu Thiem with the city center
Pros And Cons
Once completed, this high-speed railway is expected to reduce the pressure of passenger transport by road and air, and at the same time reduce the cost of transporting goods across the country.
Currently, the market share of passenger and freight transport by rail is only 1.5%. Therefore, this is considered as one of the “backbone” projects of Vienam, wake up the railway industry that has been sleeping for many years.
However, it will need a lot of research from experts before the project is implemented because of concerns about progress, investment capital as well as capacity and technical level when operating.
Stay calm! Like Metro Line 1, even though it’s delayed, it will still be done! Specifically, the completion time has been set right in 2023.
Therefore, we have the right to expect strong growth of Vietnam in general and Thu Thiem area (HCMC) in particular when the railway line complete.
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