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Old November 1st, 2013, 10:47 PM   #81
ponywithaids
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sopomon View Post
That's neo-colonialism for you.

Eh, I don't see what's so bad about colonialism in the first place. Most African nations had a significant DIP in quality of life after gaining independence.

Of course, you could talk about atrocities or human rights violations or loss of some immaterial quality like 'culture' but it's not like these places post-independence have stellar track records by any of those metrics.
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Old November 5th, 2013, 07:33 AM   #82
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Originally Posted by chornedsnorkack View Post
Singapore-Kunming does not look all that useful for me. It goes to a remote, mountainous and poor part of China.

How about a HSR Vientiane-Hanoi-Nanning instead?

That would enable continuations:
Hanoi-Nanning-Wuzhou-Guangzhou would by my estimate be shorter than Wuhan-Guangzhou;
Hanoi-Nanning-Guilin-Hengyang-Changsha-Beijing;
Hanoi-Nanning-Guilin-Hengyang-Changsha-Hangzhou-Shanghai.
Politics. The Vietnamese aren't keen on being reduced to a road for China. And Vietnam is looking to Japan for its railway investment projects.
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Old November 15th, 2013, 08:02 PM   #83
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Politics. The Vietnamese aren't keen on being reduced to a road for China. And Vietnam is looking to Japan for its railway investment projects.
That's a valid point, the original flaw in the argument against the Singapore/Kunming HSR is that it is built to a link poor and remote area to Singapore when in fact it would link Singapore/Malaysia/Thailand and Laos to SW China.

An outsider might think that it's remote but it borders three countries( Laos, Burma and Vietnam) and is in close proximity to at least to four others ( India, Cambodia , Thailand and Bangladesh) . Oil piplelines to central China run through it, a major waterway (Mekong) and it's a major toursit hub furthermore Yunnan is a major producer of food. Why then woud you not link it to everywhere else. I might also point out that there are plenty of mountains around Hanoi, Nanning and Vietianne .

Major construction works are underway in terms of expressways , railways and airports in that region a HSR link to Singapore is an extension of that. Finally the flow of tourists from China is expected to grow annually to the point that the HSR link would be the only viable way to move such numbers of people into SE Asia. Even now they are all over Thailand and they won;t be able to increase the number of planes to keep pace with demand.

Lastly Yunnan occuppies an important location so the military would want to be able to deploy large numbers of men and equipment there quickly and efficiently in case of civil unrest , natural diasters and/or foreign military intervention civilian infrastructure for this purpose. In fact they already are, they often use expressways to move troops and tanks, APCs on exercises maybe even rail as well.

There are around 48 million there maybe half in cities it's not like you have to walk around the place with a machete.
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Old November 15th, 2013, 08:14 PM   #84
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As for Yunnan being remote it borders Indo China, is only a few hundreds kilometers from India and Thailand , there is Si Chuan province directly to the North which is one of the most important provinces in China and and lies between Central China and ASEAN. Within three hours flying time of Yunnan lives around 50% of the world's population. Once that corridor is open they won't be so dependent on sea routes. The Babgkok -Kunming HSR is the most direct route as well.
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Old November 16th, 2013, 11:49 AM   #85
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Does anyone here got any recent news about the progress of the Kunming-Singapore HSL?
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Old November 17th, 2013, 08:11 AM   #86
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2020+
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Old January 13th, 2014, 06:33 AM   #87
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Originally Posted by chornedsnorkack View Post
Singapore-Kunming does not look all that useful for me. It goes to a remote, mountainous and poor part of China.

How about a HSR Vientiane-Hanoi-Nanning instead?

That would enable continuations:
Hanoi-Nanning-Wuzhou-Guangzhou would by my estimate be shorter than Wuhan-Guangzhou;
Hanoi-Nanning-Guilin-Hengyang-Changsha-Beijing;
Hanoi-Nanning-Guilin-Hengyang-Changsha-Hangzhou-Shanghai.

Having been trhough those areas I can tell you a few things

1. The whole area id mountainous in fact Northern Laos is all mountains changing the proposed route will not change that.

2. Poor part of China? Do you think that North Vietnam and Laos are richer? You cannot compare the economies on both sides of the border. A quick trip to Mohan on the Lao border will demonstrate the vast difference in living standards between the two border towns, from condos to well nothing.

3. It's Chinese capital, labour and technology so obviously they are rowing their own boat by routing the HSR line through a province of 48 million with a rapidly growing ecnomy.

4. The HSR route will connect cities such as Mohan, Puer, Yuxi, it will speed up their development turning an underdeveloped place into a developed one.

5. The countryside is poor but the cities are not, a direct connection to SE Asia will fuel the transit of people and goods either way bringing more tourists into Yunnan which is a major tourist destination. It has a tourist economy so anything that increases the flow of tourists is beneficial hence the building of the HSR into the tourists cities in NW of Yunnan. This part of a long term plan that would link Yunnan with SE Asia and West Asia via India. Rerouting the HSR would put paid to that so you would need to travel east to Nanning to travel back to Kunming and onwards through to India considering the extra timeand expense it would be easier to fly.

6. People assume that Yunnan is a poor province so everyone is poor but that is far from the truth. The middle class alone is big enough to support the HSR network here and it's growing. Just the advantages in shipping freight southwards would mean the hi tech zones and industrial parks surrounding Kunming would benefit.
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Old January 13th, 2014, 08:59 AM   #88
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Originally Posted by kunming tiger View Post

2. Poor part of China? Do you think that North Vietnam and Laos are richer? You cannot compare the economies on both sides of the border. A quick trip to Mohan on the Lao border will demonstrate the vast difference in living standards between the two border towns, from condos to well nothing.

3. It's Chinese capital, labour and technology so obviously they are rowing their own boat by routing the HSR line through a province of 48 million with a rapidly growing ecnomy.
Yunnan and Guangxi are equally 46 million people. As of 2010 census, the difference was Guangxi 46,03 millions, Yunnan 45,97 millions.
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5. The countryside is poor but the cities are not, a direct connection to SE Asia will fuel the transit of people and goods either way bringing more tourists into Yunnan which is a major tourist destination. It has a tourist economy so anything that increases the flow of tourists is beneficial hence the building of the HSR into the tourists cities in NW of Yunnan. This part of a long term plan that would link Yunnan with SE Asia and West Asia via India. Rerouting the HSR would put paid to that so you would need to travel east to Nanning to travel back to Kunming and onwards through to India considering the extra timeand expense it would be easier to fly.
And how does Kunming-Vientiane advance that? The way Kunming to India goes Yunnan-Burma, without touching Laos. So how are the plans for Yunnan-Burma railway?
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Old January 13th, 2014, 12:47 PM   #89
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Yunnan and Guangxi are equally 46 million people. As of 2010 census, the difference was Guangxi 46,03 millions, Yunnan 45,97 millions.


And how does Kunming-Vientiane advance that? The way Kunming to India goes Yunnan-Burma, without touching Laos. So how are the plans for Yunnan-Burma railway?
Put simply the Kunming-Vietianne HSR doesn't advance anything much by itself it only makes sense if it joins up with the proposed HSR from Singapore via Malaysia/Thailand.

The last time I went through Laos, the northern part was virtually empty, what few people lived there eixted on the sides of the road, even the kids weren't clothed in some cases. Th HSR makes no sense at all because Vietianne itself is small more a town than city.

But it adjoins Northern Thailand it would open the tourist route both ways , business in Laos and Thailand could use Kunming as a hub to ship further north and west.

The Indians aren;t keen on the HSR for precisely those reasons they know what it means to go head to head with the Chinese. The HSR link to Bangladesh to the deep water port is more important because it allow companies to set up in this region and it saves both time and money instead of going overland to Shanghai especially from the Middle East and Africa.

Think of Laos, SW China Burma and Bangladesh as a single economic sphere if you like. Interconnected by road/rail/air etc. Guizhou, Sichuan and Chongqing connecting via Kunming to SE Asia and South Asia (Bangladesh). Goods and people going both ways , The Thais are expecting a massive increase in Chinese tourism as a result of the proposed HSR from Kunming. If they need another HSR from Guangxi they could route it along the coast of Vietnam via Cambodia . The Thais are proposing a HSR link to the Eastern border that would open that option.

When I say a HSR link to South Asia I meant as a long term project 2030 because I can't see India co operating , they drag their feet until they have little choice.

The FTA really has brought about the need to seek greater connectivity between urban centers in the region. We need to connect SW China to the ports in Vietnam, Thailand and Bangladesh.

I personally would have gone the shortest way from Northern Thailand to Southern Yunnan via Laos. The other way is longer, harder , takes longer and is more expensive. Yeah it benefits Vietianne but at what cost?

Such is the contrast between the two sides of the border, on the Chinese side is the constant drone of jackhammers and machinery, workers everywhere. On the other side you have to step over sleeping dogs to get to the police station and it takes forever to stamp your passport. Change is coming though. The Chinese are the best chance Laos has of pulling themselves up out of poverty.

Yunnan and Guangxi may have around the same number of people but a HSR through Yunnan instead of Guangxi would see a lot more tourism into Laos for th simple reason being that a lot fo those coming by HSR literally live rght next door. Now the highway to Thailand is open there's a lot more people driving down, most of them are from Yunnan. Due to the high tolls most other people in China would find it easier to fly in rather than driving long distances . The Kunming/ Vietianne HSR would bring a lot of people from Yunnan on the way to Thailand.

Remember that there are more ethic minorities living in Yunnan than in any other province, it's the most non Han province in China. These ethic groups share cultural and linguistic links with you guessed it the same ethic groups across the borders in Vietnam, Laos and Burma even Thailand. They have links to each other obviously so greater interconnectivity is a positive.

Poverty is worse in remote regions and among minority peoples across all the borders both in Yunnan and the surrounding areas. Viewed in this context you want to put the transport links through the middle of that region. A lot of drug trafficking and Human trafficking goes on down there so the sooner economic opportunities increase the better. I'm sure the other countries feel the same way.
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Old January 13th, 2014, 01:35 PM   #90
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Bangladesh to build railroad to Burma border by 2014 .
Thursday, 08 July 2010 15:37 Takaloo News - Narinjara News E-mail | Print | PDF .Bangladesh announced on Tuesday that it is planning to build a railroad up to the Burma border by 2014, at a cost of 18.52 billion taka, with the aim of creating...

Dhaka: Bangladesh announced on Tuesday that it is planning to build a railroad up to the Burma border by 2014, at a cost of 18.52 billion taka, with the aim of creating a corridor for the proposed Trans-Asian Railway and to connect to China through Burma.
Bangladesh signed an agreement to join the Trans-Asian Railway network in November 2007, after a three-year feasibility study conducted from 1999 to 2001 and found connecting to the network would be beneficial.

By connecting to the Trans-Asian Railway, which will also be part of a trans-continental rail network, Bangladesh will be able to link with Southeast Asian countries like Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, Malaysia, and Singapore through Burma, as well as with Europe through Turkey.

Bangladesh is also keen on using the proposed Chittagong-Gongdoon rail track to connect with China's Kunming through Burma.

Premier Sheik Hasina had also raised the issue of Chittagong-Kunming road and rail links during her recent official visit to China as significant steps in boosting bilateral ties between the two countries.

According to a senior official from the Bangladesh Communications Ministry, it is quite feasible for Bangladesh to construct the rail link with China by crossing Burma, as much of the railway network currently exists, despite some significant gaps.

A railroad was constructed between Chittagong and Sittwe after a complete feasibility study by the Burmese railway authorities from 1917 to 1919, during British colonial rule, but it could not be completed due to the outbreak of World War II.

In Chittagong District in Bangladesh and in Maungdaw Township in western Burma’s Arakan State partial rail tracks exist that was constructed for the then proposed Chittagong-Sittwe rail line.'

The official said Bangladesh is seeking cooperation from China and Burma for implementation of the proposed tri-nation railway network that would also be part of the Trans-Asian Railway, by renovating the existing old tracks and connecting the newly constructed tracks through Burma.

The proposed 14,000 kilometre Trans-Asian Railway was initiated by the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific in the 1960's, with the primary purpose of providing a conduit through which trains could pass without interruption between Asia and Europe.

By 2001, four corridors provided for the project had been closely examined. Of those four, the southern corridor runs from Europe to Southeast Asia, connecting Turkey, Iran, Pakistan, India, Bangladesh, Burma, and Thailand, with links to China's Yunnan Province and Singapore via Malaysia.



The announcement came during a press briefing by AK Khandker, Planning Minister, after a meeting of the Executive Committee of the National Economic Council chaired by Prime Minister Sheik Hasina.

"The committee has approved an 18.25 billion taka project to construct a single-track rail route from Chittagong to Gongdoon on the [Burma] border. The rail route is especially aimed at providing a corridor for the Trans-Asian Railway as well as building communications with China," the minister told the press after the meeting.

The proposed railroad will be a 128-kilometer long, single-track meter gauge, and construction is set to begin sometime this month.
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Old January 13th, 2014, 01:41 PM   #91
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Work begins on Bangladesh rail link
By JOSEPH ALLCHIN 4 April 2011 Print Email Tweet
Construction of a railway linking southern Bangladesh to neighbouring Arakan state in Burma has started as part of Dhaka’s goal for better connectivity with China.

Bangladeshi Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina officially opened the construction project yesterday in the coastal town of Cox’s Bazaar. The $US255 million transport link is part of a broader initiative that Bangladesh hopes will connect its second city and major port, Chittagong, with China – another plank in a web of infrastructure that aims to increase connectivity in the region.

Both Bangladesh and Burma have seemingly gravitated towards China, with billions of dollars offered for such infrastructure projects and the possibility that they could tap into expected demand for out-sourced labour in industries such as garments.

China meanwhile prizes both southern nations for the links they provide to the Indian Ocean, meaning its inevitable rivalry with India rumbles on.

The railway line will connect Bangladesh and Burma at the Gundum border crossing, south of Chittagong. In August Qin Guangrong, governor of China’s southwestern state of Yunnan, visited Bangladesh to discuss the transport link, a project that Hasina seems keen on.
But complaints over rail construction near the historic Arakan site of Mrauk Oo stoked anger amongst locals last year. Among them was the chairman of the Rakhine Nationalities Democratic Party (RNDP), Dr. Aye Maung, who told DVB: “Constructing railways is beneficial for the region and its inhabitants, but they should be constructed in a way that is not harmful to religious buildings in ancient archaeological zones.”

Relations between Burma and Bangladesh have fluctuated in recent years, with rights to lucrative gas blocks in the Bay of Bengal sparking tensions over maritime territorial claims. In 2009, two oil companies exploring in supposedly Bangladeshi waters claimed they were being “intimidated” by 12 Burmese warships that had approached their location.
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Old January 13th, 2014, 02:33 PM   #92
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The Indians aren;t keen on the HSR for precisely those reasons they know what it means to go head to head with the Chinese. The HSR link to Bangladesh to the deep water port is more important because it allow companies to set up in this region and it saves both time and money instead of going overland to Shanghai especially from the Middle East and Africa.
If the Indians are dragging their feet and what Yunnan needs is a port on Indian Ocean to skip the long sail around Singapore then the logical move would be a railway Kunming-Lashio-Mandalay-Sittwe.

What is being done between Kunming and the Burmese border?
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Old January 13th, 2014, 06:23 PM   #93
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If the Indians are dragging their feet and what Yunnan needs is a port on Indian Ocean to skip the long sail around Singapore then the logical move would be a railway Kunming-Lashio-Mandalay-Sittwe.

What is being done between Kunming and the Burmese border?
New Fund over 5 Billion Yuan to Boost Dali-Ruili Railway Construction

Newspaper,August31st, 2012 )
Opening the railway map of China, one can see the main trend of cargos and passengers transportation between the inland and the western region of China. From the capital city of Yunnan province, Kunming, the goods and people flows take the Kunming-Dali railway to go westward and reach Dali city. If the railway could be extended to Ruili in Dehong prefecture, the freight and passengers would enjoy an easy access directly southward into Yangoon in Myanmar, Bangkok in Thailand and even Kuala Lumpur in Singapore, finally reaching the .estuary of Indian Ocean. This is the general path of the west Pan-Asia railway. For long, the issue as how to erase the barricade on the way from Dali to Ruili has been the key point of establishing this international artery railway which links China with countries of Southeast Asian together.
A few days ago the reporter had learned the information from the prefectural office of railway construction that plan of the national level-1 railroad from Baoshan to Ruili was currently under revision and a 5 billion yuan new investment was expected to propel the construction. With the completion of the rail in the near future, a dream of touring the ASEAN nations by train could soon become reality.
railway network and secure the Sino- Myanmar strategic route of energy resources, not to mention its function in deepening international communication.

The Three Challenges Posed by Gaoli Gong Mountain
In the eyes of railway expertise, the rail from Dali to Ruili has a huge investment, a long mileage and a extended construction period due to the extremely complex geographical and topographical conditions of the construction terrains. The construction section between Dali and Baoshan started in June of 2006 while the exploration and survey for Baoshan-Ruili section went on simultaneously, the construction of which began in 2010.
During the process, the construction plan was changed and amended several times because of the intricate conditions of the designed route.
The Dali-Ruili railway will run across the middle part of the Hengduan Mountain, which lies on the southeastern fringe of Qingha-Tibetan Plateau, and the West Yunnan Plateau adjacent to the southwestern point of Tibetan Plateau. The longitudinal valley in the western part of Yunnan province greatly raises the difficulty of construction with its huge mountain ranges and rivers: Daguang Mountain., Sanchong Mountain, Nushan Mountain Rnage, the southern part of Gaoligong Mountain, Yangbi River, Yinjiang River, Lancang River and Long River…The list is bewildering. Among the 330 kilometers from Baoshan to Ruili, the length of bridges
tunnels account for 75%. In the original construction design, there were totally 97 bridges along the railway with an aggregate distance of 27.65 kilometers, including 14 giant bridges, 55 large bridges, 25 medium bridges and 3 small bridges. The 34-kilometer Gaoligong Tunnel, one of all the 57 tunnels, ranks the longest in Asia.
The Gaoligong Tunnel is an essential path from Baoshan to Ruili. The Dehong basin has a altitude of 700 meters, which is far lower than the altitude of Baoshan. This special geographical feature requires an incessant traverse at the bottom of the mountain for nearly 34 kilometers, which may be even more difficult than the railway construction on the frozen ground at Tibetan Plateau
On the other hand, the complicated geographical structure of the Gaoligong Mountain alone imposes three challenges for the construction team: the geothermal in this region which might lead to leak of hot water in the tunnel, the high in-situ stress and frequent earthquakes requiring extra quake-proof measures. To tackle those problems, the National Ministry of Railways set up a special technology team to estimate and examine the construction plan repeatedly. According the latest information, the current design will add some more curves to the original plan.
Additional Budget of 5 Billion Yuan for Dali-Ruili Railway
As a notorious longitudinal rift valley, the precipitous Gaoligong Mountain boasts a perpendicular height as 4,000 meters. The vertical distance from the construction ground to the highest point of the tunnel amounts to 700 meters. After considering the length of the tunnel and extension of the construction phase, the construction team finally decided to adopt a multi-point or sloping ground method in the new construction plan. Plainly speaking, it is a method to dig a construction well at the top of the tunnel and then excavate the tunnel from the middle to its two ends. This technique can shorten the construction largely but has a high demand on equipment and technological proficiency. The drilling machine used in this construction costs about a hundred-million yuan.
The Baoshan-Ruili section of Dali-Ruili Railway has a length of 196 kilometers with 63 bridges and 15 tunnels, which altogether accounts for 46.8% of the overall length. The original investment was 13.56 billion yuan and later was raised by 5 billion yuan since the difficulty of construction and the rises in material prices.
The Dehong prefectural office of railway construction revealed that the final draft of Baoshan-Ruili railway construction is now drawing to an end. The recent revision was a perfection of the original plan. The final design will be reported to national authority by Yunnan provincial government and National Ministry of Railways. Soon after the approval of National Development and Reform Commission, the real construction work will be put into full blast.

New Fund over 5 Billion Yuan to Boost Dali-Ruili Railway Construction

Source:大公报 Pubdate:2012-09-25 17:39 Editor::juliet Font-size:big middling small

(this piece of news was riginally published on Takung Newspaper,August31st, 2012 )
Opening the railway map of China, one can see the main trend of cargos and passengers transportation between the inland and the western region of China. From the capital city of Yunnan province, Kunming, the goods and people flows take the Kunming-Dali railway to go westward and reach Dali city. If the railway could be extended to Ruili in Dehong prefecture, the freight and passengers would enjoy an easy access directly southward into Yangoon in Myanmar, Bangkok in Thailand and even Kuala Lumpur in Singapore, finally reaching the .estuary of Indian Ocean. This is the general path of the west Pan-Asia railway. For long, the issue as how to erase the barricade on the way from Dali to Ruili has been the key point of establishing this international artery railway which links China with countries of Southeast Asian together.
A few days ago the reporter had learned the information from the prefectural office of railway construction that plan of the national level-1 railroad from Baoshan to Ruili was currently under revision and a 5 billion yuan new investment was expected to propel the construction. With the completion of the rail in the near future, a dream of touring the ASEAN nations by train could soon become reality.

(Mr.Gong, the governor of Dehong prefecture, studied the construction plan)
The Final Link in Sino-Myanmar Railway
The Dali-Ruili Rail is a key project in the national “Medium and Long Term Railway Newwork Plan” and a fundamental component of the west Pan-Asian railway. The Dali- Ruili rail serves as a major channel in the eight main passenger railroads to Yunnan and four principal cross-border paths to Myanmar, India, Laos and Thailand. It is also the final link on the Sino-Myanmar International Railway.
With a total length of 330 kilometers, the Daili-Ruili rail is a joint-venture construction of the Yunnan provincial government and the National Ministry of Railways, which has become the largest railway construction since the Neijiang-Kunming Railway in terms of its14.7-billion yuan investment. In the railway plan, 7 cities in Dali autonomous prefecture, Baoshan Municipality and Dehong autonomous prefecture will be connected with a single line of national I–level standard electric railway. The designed transport capacity is 12 pairs of trains per day and 12,000,000 tons of cargos per year. According to the draft, the speed of the train will reach 140 kilometers per hour.
When the rail is finished, it will become the trunk line in Sino-Myanmar railway which offers convenient entrance to Myanmar. With this railway, the trip from Kunming to Ruili will be contracted to a evening-to-morning ride to travel over 700 kilometers within 12 hours. In the respective of economy, the railway will reinforce Yunnan’s position as a bridge for the opening-up to Southeast Asian countries and bring new impetus to cities and regions along the path. Furthermore, the Dali-Ruili railway is going to alter the status quo of Yunnan’s
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Old January 13th, 2014, 06:35 PM   #94
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Home / China / Economy
Railway line heralds new trading dawnUpdated: 2013-03-18 03:21
By GUO ANFEI and HU YONGQI in Kunming, Yunnan ( China Daily) Comments Print Mail Large Medium SmallGrowth: Getting on the right track for economic expansion

Liu Baisheng, general director of the Kunming Railway Bureau, said locals would be the beneficiaries from this new railway.
The Yuxi-Mengzi Railway goes through the central Yunnan Plateau, with its mountains and canyons and some of the most intense areas of crustal tectonic movement. Started in September 2005, the new line took seven years to build, said Liu from the Kunming Railway Bureau "The same length of 141 km would only take two or three years in less rugged areas," he said.

Because of the special geographical conditions, Yuxi-Mengzi line builders were confronted with many challenges. More than half of the railway, 77 km, was built on bridges and tunnels. The Xiushan tunnel, 10,302 meters in length, is the longest railway tunnel in Yunnan province and runs through multiple faults and caves. It is famous for complex geological conditions and frequent changes in surrounding rock types.

The tunnel experienced at least 150,000 cubic meters of water leakage during construction every day. The volume increased to 230,000 cubic meters in the rainy season. "The tunnel builders had to endure suffocating humidity, hot days in summer and dust from the digging. Sometimes the collapse of sandstone and mudslides also threatened their lives," said Liu.

After seven years of hard work, they finally completed this Southern Yunnan "mountain road", marking an historic achievement.

Guo Huiming, head of the southern Yunnan railway construction project, was filled with emotion. "The completion of the railway was not easy," he remarked in a very understated fashion.

Guo said the engineering geology of the entire line was extremely complex, with many mountains and deep valleys. "We had poor construction conditions and the work was difficult. There were 173 intersections. The amount of stone ballast totaled 447,626 cubic meters. And there were the bridges and tunnels."


Liu, who attended the National People's Congress session as a deputy in Beijing last week, told China Daily that the Yuxi-Mengzi railway starts from Yuxi, traversing Honghe Hani and Yi autonomous prefecture to cover an area of 48,200 square kilometers with a population of more than 6 million. The area is the major habitation of ethnic groups such as the Hani, Yi and Dai.

"With Kunming-Yuxi, Yuxi-Mengzi railway lines in operation, we have another option for transporting huge cargos long distances across Yunnan province. The new line will ensure faster speed and safer trips that sharply reduce the cost of transportation and increase profits," an entrepreneur in Honghe, who preferred to remain anonymous, said excitedly.

The tracks, mostly bridges and tunnels, were regarded as a soaring steel dragon by residents along the railway, who are optimistic about selling more local agricultural and sideline products and confident of developing the tourism industry.

The Yuxi-Mengzi line, according to the former ministry of railways, was a high-risk project because it involved, among many geological challenges, karst high-pressure, water-rich complex geology, tectonic movements, rock-crushing, lots of groundwater in caves, flooding and sudden landslides.

The former ministry will be incorporated into the Ministry of Transport according to the just concluded session of the National People's Congress.

The former ministry and Yunnan provincial government attached great importance to the railway. "They came to the construction site several times to conduct research and to organize meetings to study and deploy technical solutions during construction," Guo said. "So we ultimately completed the Yuxi-Mengzi line thanks to their support."

Economic circles

On the map of Yunnan, the Yuxi-Mengzi Railway directly connects Honghe with Kunming, along with the existing Kunming-Yuxi Railway. Those areas are rich in mineral, biological, cultural and tourism resources. The most immediate effect of the railway's operation is to further enhance Kunming-Yuxi rail transport capabilities. "More importantly, it runs through several cities in central and southern Yunnan so economic factors can flow into each other more smoothly," said Duan Gang, president of the Yunnan Institute of Economic Research.

According to Liu from the Kunming Railway Bureau, Yunnan will become a big economic center, of which cores will be the central Yunnan Industrial District, the Kunming-Yuxi green industrial economy and Kunming-Yuxi leisure tourism economy. There will be two wings — the four cities of Kunming, Qujing, Yuxi and Chuxiong, with Kunming at the center.

The central Yunnan economic circle will be the economic, political, cultural and transportation center. The area will function as the core driving force to promote the integration of the province's economic resources and factors of production, Duan said.

Efforts have been made to promote the construction of central Yunnan Industrial District, focusing on high-end vehicle and equipment manufacturing, electronic information, biology, new materials, textile appliances and a modern services industry cluster area, according to the provincial government.

The Yuxi-Mengzi Railway and the Kunming-Bangkok Highway, along with the construction of the Pan-Asia Railway, will link the southern Yunnan economic circle with cities including Gejiu, Kaiyuan, Mengzi and Jianshui with Mohan and other important ports.

Rich natural and human resources in the area give it a huge advantage on top of the new communication links. The southern Yunnan economic circle is also part of the Kun-River Economic Corridor and there are also the central Yunnan economic connections to the Indian and Pacific Oceans east line and midline arteries.

Accelerating opening

The manufacturing capacity formed by the central Yunnan economic circle will steadily go to the southern Yunnan economic circle, targeted at the ASEAN market and other major importers around the world. The Yuxi-Mengzi Railway will also take on northward transport tasks from the southern Yunnan economic circle and also ASEAN regional resources in order to meet the central Yunnan economic circle requirement for industrial development.

Gejiu city contributes more than 90 percent of the country's output of refined tin. Xiaolongtan coal mine is Yunnan's largest open-cut brown coal mine, located in Kaiyuan.

In addition, the southern Yunnan region is also rich in iron, lead, gold and other mineral resources. These are indispensable for the development of the central Yunnan economic circle.

The Pan-Asia Railway will be the third Asia-Europe continental bridge linking China and ASEAN economies. As an important part of the east line of the Pan-Asia Railway, the Yuxi-Mengzi Railway will carry even more far-reaching significance.

In 2011, China's State Council announced its support to Yunnan province to accelerate the construction of an important frontier for Southwest China to open up, creating a historic opportunity for Yunnan. The Yuxi-Mengzi Railway will act as a highly significant link between China and Southeast Asian markets, further strengthening cooperation and exchanges between the countries, especially Vietnam, said Duan.

"For Yunnan, the railway has the positive significance of improving the province's railway network layout as well as the state of the railway business, promoting safe production and optimizing the railway industry structure. In the future, Yunnan will rely on the Pan-Asia Railway East Line to speed up the pace of opening-up and economic development and accelerate its integration into the global market," Liu Baisheng said.
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Old January 13th, 2014, 06:42 PM   #95
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According to Liu from the Kunming Railway Bureau, Yunnan will become a big economic center, of which cores will be the central Yunnan Industrial District, the Kunming-Yuxi green industrial economy and Kunming-Yuxi leisure tourism economy. There will be two wings — the four cities of Kunming, Qujing, Yuxi and Chuxiong, with Kunming at the center.

The central Yunnan economic circle will be the economic, political, cultural and transportation center. The area will function as the core driving force to promote the integration of the province's economic resources and factors of production, Duan said.

Efforts have been made to promote the construction of central Yunnan Industrial District, focusing on high-end vehicle and equipment manufacturing, electronic information, biology, new materials, textile appliances and a modern services industry cluster area, according to the provincial government.

The Yuxi-Mengzi Railway and the Kunming-Bangkok Highway, along with the construction of the Pan-Asia Railway, will link the southern Yunnan economic circle with cities including Gejiu, Kaiyuan, Mengzi and Jianshui with Mohan and other important ports.

Rich natural and human resources in the area give it a huge advantage on top of the new communication links. The southern Yunnan economic circle is also part of the Kun-River Economic Corridor and there are also the central Yunnan economic connections to the Indian and Pacific Oceans east line and midline arteries.

This is why the HSR was routed through Yunnan not Guangxi, they are developing huge industrial and services economy within a 200 kilometer radius of Kunming. These plants and factories will eventually freight their goods SE to Hanoi, SW to the Indian ocean and South to Thailand.
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Old January 13th, 2014, 06:59 PM   #96
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After the Trans-Asian Railway Network is completed, Vietnam and Cambodia will be linked with Thailand and Myanmar by train, and China will have a closer political and economic relationship with countries in the Mekong River Basin where the total population has reached 300 million people.

Furthermore, energy and goods that Japan and South Korea need can also be transported to both countries through this railway network of global significance.

The railway network will facilitate the movement of goods and people, improve the efficiency of economic activities, and help create a more peaceful and stable geopolitical environment.

Mekong River Basin was the word I was looking for before, basically the whole area is under developed and under governed. As a result a lot of illict activities go on there because of the political vacum and lack of economic opportunities. Any solution must address the issues of the entire river basin not just the Chinese side. The railway is just on aspect of it but its highly symbolic as well.
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Old January 13th, 2014, 09:33 PM   #97
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Originally Posted by kunming tiger View Post
Put simply the Kunming-Vietianne HSR doesn't advance anything much by itself it only makes sense if it joins up with the proposed HSR from Singapore via Malaysia/Thailand.

The last time I went through Laos, the northern part was virtually empty, what few people lived there eixted on the sides of the road, even the kids weren't clothed in some cases. Th HSR makes no sense at all because Vietianne itself is small more a town than city.

But it adjoins Northern Thailand it would open the tourist route both ways , business in Laos and Thailand could use Kunming as a hub to ship further north and west.
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I personally would have gone the shortest way from Northern Thailand to Southern Yunnan via Laos. The other way is longer, harder , takes longer and is more expensive. Yeah it benefits Vietianne but at what cost?
But then why via Laos at all?
China and Thailand have no border but Mekong River looks to be directly between Kunming and Chiang Mai. What would be the shorter way to Thailand - on east bank across the far corner of Laos, or instead on west bank across far corner of Burma?
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Old January 14th, 2014, 12:08 AM   #98
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Isn't it too risky at this time to build something through Myanmar because of political instability there? And that's assuming that they would even allow it. There needs to be some advantage for them too and I don't see any. Unless maybe if Chinese pay for it themselves (not via loans) plus provide some extra development money.
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Old January 14th, 2014, 12:45 AM   #99
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If you ask same project to be done by Siemens it will much much more expensive than what China is offering.
Yes but there's a big difference between "Made by China" and "Made by Germany".
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Old January 14th, 2014, 04:06 AM   #100
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Originally Posted by BE0GRAD View Post
Yes but there's a big difference between "Made by China" and "Made by Germany".
German HSR has killed more people than their Chinese counterpart
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