Minister Asks Chinese Diplomat to Help Improve Labour Skills | Lao Tribune

Minister Asks Chinese Diplomat to Help Improve Labour Skills

Minister of Labour and Social Welfare Sompheng Xaysompheng has asked newly appointed Chinese Ambassador to Laos Wang Wentian to help improve the basic infrastructure of Oudomxay Provincial Vocational Training Center.

The request was made when Mr Sompheng met with the Chinese Ambassador in Vientiane Capital on Aug 16.

The Vocational Training Center will play an important role in providing trained workers to the ongoing Laos-China railway construction project, said the minister.

During the talks, both sides agreed to deliberate on the possibility of signing an MoU on labour cooperation between Laos and China to create favourable conditions for Chinese workers working in Laos and vice versa.

The contractors of the Laos-China Railway Project have recently said that they need as many as 7,000 local workers to build the multibillion US dollar railway. The project is scheduled to be completed by 2021.

Yet currently more than 5,000 of workers working for the project are Chinese and Vietnamese nationals.

Deputy Minister and Chairman of Laos-China Railway Construction Project Management Committee told a meeting in Vientiane on Jul 19 that since the beginning of the construction project in December 2016, contractors have built 130 km of planned railway length.

The built railway section is equivalent to 31.35% of the total railway length-417 km.

Since late 2016, the constructors have recorded a 7.7 per cent construction progress. They have drilled 5.8 km of 49 out of 75 tunnels.

Drilling 197.83km of tunnels is needed to complete the railway project which will form part of China-ASEAN rail link stretching from southern China to the island city-state Singapore.

The official groundbreaking ceremony for the Laos-China Railway Project took place in Naxay village, Xaythany district, Vientiane Capital where the main station will be built in December 2015 coincident with the celebration of the 40th founding anniversary of the Lao People’s Democratic Republic.

The designed speed for passenger trains is 160 km/h, while the speed of 200 km/h is reserved for flat terrain between Vang Vieng and Vientiane Capital and the freight train will travel at 120km per hour. The traction system will be electrically powered.

Up to 32 stations including 21 by-pass stations and 11 passenger stations will be built along the rail line.

The project will involve building 167 bridges with a total length of 61.81km, 75 tunnels with a combined length of 197.83km. The longest tunnel will be about 9.5 km, called Laos-China Friendship Tunnel.

The total project cost is estimated at US$5.8 billion where China is responsible for 70 per cent of the total investment, and Laos is responsible for the remainder.

Source: Lao News Agency