Planned Thailand-PRC High-speed Railway to Link to PRC-Lao PDR Railway
Thailand will accelerate its railway connectivity, in line with the opening of the railway link between the People’s Republic of China (PRC) and Lao People’s Democratic Republic (Lao PDR) in December 2021.
According to the news release by the Government of Thailand, the 253-km section between Bangkok and Nakhon Ratchasima will be the first phase of the PRC-Thailand high-speed railway project. It is set to start operating in 2026. The second phase will be the 356-km section between Nakhon Ratchasima and Nong Khai, set to open for public service in 2028. These will be linked to the PRC-Lao PDR railway project.
Rail links between Thailand and the PRC will further boost trade and tourism. It could also be expanded into regional hubs, linking with other ASEAN transport networks.
The PRC-Lao PDR railway is scheduled to open on 2 December 2021 and is expected to help increase border trade in the northeastern province of Nong Khai and promote Thailand’s tourism.
Thailand also plans to construct a new friendship bridge with Lao PDR over the Mekong River for the railway, about 30 meters from the existing Thai-Lao Friendship Bridge.