India is set to benefit from the famed Japanese bullet train technology, with Tokyo today pledging to invest heavily in building high speed railway systems in the country.
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and his Japanese counterpart Shinzo Abe issued a joint statement today in which they laid down the course of co-operation between the two countries on setting up high speed railway systems in India.
The two sides signed the Exchange of Notes for yen loan totalling USD 424 billion. This includes a USD 71 billion for the Mumbai Metro Line-lll project as well as the yen loan of the fiscal year 2012 for USD 353.106 billion for eight projects.
Prime Minister Singh noted Japan’s interest in supporting the introduction of high speed railway systems in India.
Singh appreciated Japan’s high level of expertise in designing and implementing Shinkansen (Bullet Train) systems.
Singh conveyed that India will plan such projects based on its infrastructure priorities, commercial viability and financial resources in India.
“The two Prime Ministers decided that the two sides will co-finance a joint feasibility study of high speed railway system on the Mumbai-Ahmedabad route,” the joint statement issued after the bilateral summit said.
The Mumbai-Ahmedabad rail line would stretch 500 kilometres at an estimated cost of upto one trillion yen.
The two Prime Ministers, recognising the importance of upgrading the speed of passenger trains on the existing Delhi-Mumbai route to 160-200 kmph (semi-high speed railway system), welcomed the final report of the feasibility study undertaken with Japan’s cooperation, and confirmed that further consultation between the two countries would be continued to draw up a road-map.