The contract comprises the design and construction of 253km of line and the installation of electrical and mechanical systems, as well as a fleet of EMUs. In addition, the contract covers technology transfer and staff training to support operation and maintenance of the line. 

The contract is the first of 14 to be awarded for the line, which has an expected total cost of Baht 179bn. The project is due for completion in early 2026 and will have six stops at Bangkok’s Bang Sue Grand Station, Don Muang, Ayutthaya, Saraburi, Pak Chong and Nakhon Ratchasima. 

Civil works on the project will be carried out by Thai contractors, and Chinese contractors will oversee the design and installation of track, electrification, rolling stock and operating systems. 

It is hoped that the projects will increase Thailand’s economic competitiveness and stimulate national and regional development.  

“This project will also give an opportunity for an exchange of knowledge,” says government spokesperson, Mr Anucha Burapachaisri. “Thailand intends to use the technological know-how for the best interests of the country and its people, and the region. The project will enhance the transport network between Thailand and China and regional connectivity, binding the hearts of the people for years to come.” 

The line will serve as Phase 1 of Thailand’s broader standard-gauge railway project, which is intended to eventually become part of a larger trans-Asian rail corridor between China and Singapore. Work on the Phase 2 of the project, which will extend the line 354.5km from Nakhon Ratchasima to Nong Khai on the border Laos, is also underway.  

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