Nepal | May 30, 2020

Kathmandu-Kyirong railway feasibility study kicks off

Himalayan News Service
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The estimated cost to build the project is about Rs 69 billion

Kathmandu, May 22

The feasibility study of the 75-kilometre-long Kathmandu-Kyirong railway kicked off from today.

The joint study team comprises eight Chinese officials from China Railway First Survey and Design Institute Group, officials and engineers from the Department of Railways (DoRW) and local consultant.

According to Prakash Bhakta Upadhyaya, spokesperson for DoRW, the eight officials – including five engineers – from the Chinese company arrived in the Capital on Monday.

“We started the feasibility study from Tokha of Kathmandu and will be reaching Kyirong tomorrow,” Upadhyaya informed via phone from Kharanitar in Nuwakot district. “We are studying the rock foundation, soil structure and possible alignment, among other factors.”

Upadhyaya further said that the joint team has set a target to complete the field study within the next 10 days and the Chinese team will submit the final feasibility report to DoRW by August.

Foreign Affairs Minister Pradeep Kumar Gyawali, during his visit to the northern neighbour in April, had signed an agreement with the Chinese railways authorities to conduct the detailed feasibility study (DFS) utilising the Chinese support.

Meanwhile, in April, Madhusudan Adhikari, secretary at the Ministry of Physical Infrastructure and Transport (MoPIT), had led a six-member team to China to discuss the project. The high-level delegation had held discussions on Kathmandu-Kyirong railway project and both the countries had agreed to conduct the feasibility study and submit the related report within six months. Thereafter, the officials had selected the Chinese company to carry out the study.

“The Chinese firm will bear all the expenses for this feasibility study,” said Upadhyaya. The Kathmandu-Kyirong railway project has also been included in the government’s ‘Policies and Programmes’ announced by President Bidhya Devi Bhandari on Monday.

A Chinese technical team, which was led by Jhang Lee Yang, deputy administrator of National Railway Administration, had conducted a field study in November last year and suggested that the project was technically feasible.

Meanwhile, the Chinese railway authorities have already conducted pre-feasibility study of the Kathmandu-Kyirong railway project and they have estimated it would cost about Rs 69 billion to build the project.

A version of this article appears in print on May 23, 2018 of The Himalayan Times.

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