EEC Policy Committee acknowledges plan to expedite high-speed rail project

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The Eastern Economic Corridor (EEC) Policy Committee has acknowledged a plan to expedite the high-speed rail project linking Suvarnabhumi, Don Mueang and U-tapao airports, with the construction contract to be signed on October 25 this year.

The EEC Policy Committee meeting on October 16, chaired by Prime Minister and Defense Minister, Gen. Prayut Chan-o-cha, acknowledged the urgency of the plan to speed up the high-speed rail project linking Thailand’s three main airports, as proposed by the Finance Minister, Uttama Savanayana.

The project is to be undertaken in three phases. The first phase is the 28-kilometer route linking Phaya Thai station and Suvarnabhumi airport. Its construction will start after the contract is signed on October 25. The second phase is the 170-kilometer route linking Suvarnabhumi and U-tapao airports. Construction will begin in two years following the signing of the contract. The third phase is the 22-kilometer route linking Phaya Thai station and Don Mueang airport, with construction to start following the complete handover of the required land or four years after the contract is signed.

If the project proceeds as planned, high-speed rail services connecting Phaya Thai station and Suvarnabhumi and U-tapao airports should be open by the end of 2023 or the beginning of 2024. The rail service connecting Don Mueang airport and Phaya Thai station should open in 2024 or 2025.

Deputy Prime Minister and Public Health Minister, Anutin Charnvirakul, said the Prime Minister had instructed related units to make sure that the construction project does not affect commuters. No compensation will be paid should the handover of the land be delayed, as stated in the agreement. The government and the private sector will have to accept equal responsibility if the project encounters obstacles.

On October 25, the contract signing ceremony will be chaired by the Prime Minister.