Lao Railway Construction Powers Through the Rains

Construction of the almost-US$6 billion railway linking Vientiane to the Chinese border is making good progress despite the torrential rains, floods and landslides afflicting the north of the country. 

Deputy Minister of Public Works and Transport Mr Lattanamany Khounnivong told Vientiane Times the railway is now at least 37 percent complete. “Of course, the project has been impacted by the weather to some extent, but not seriously. Work is continuing despite the rain,” he said.  

An official in charge of the railway in Luang Prabang province said that although flooding and landslides had occurred there, railway construction activities had not been particularly affected. 

In Oudomxay province, there was no flooding in the areas where the railway is being built so work has continued on schedule. Project coordinator for Oudomxay province, Phonpadith Phommakit, told Vientiane Times the Chinese contractors were now focusing on two main tasks – tunnel boring and bridge building.

“Construction teams are working at every point of the tunnel boring and bridge construction. Tunnels measuring 570 and 400 metres have now been drilled through,” he said.

The railway will have a total length of 126.6 km in Oudomxay province, with 78 percent of the track being built on 60 bridges and in 32 tunnels.  The railway, which covers a total distance of over 400km, is scheduled for completion in 2021.

Source: Vientiane Times

By Somsack Pongkhao  


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