HCMC – Vietnam Railway Corporation (VNR) has proposed the Government allow it to import 37 train carriages, manufactured from 1979 to 1982, from Japan at no charge.
These train carriages had earlier been used by the East Japan Railway Company (JR East) and had been left idle, the local media reported.
These train carriages, which must run on railways with a gauge of 1,067 millimeters, have a capacity of 68-82 seats each and can operate at a maximum speed of 95 kilometers per hour.
According to VNR, despite being operational for 40 years, these carriages have no serious problems in safety and quality. If the Government allows the import of these train carriages, JR East will provide them to Vietnam at no charge, while the Vietnamese side will pay import and refurbishment fees.
VNR Chairman Vu Anh Minh said the project to import the carriages needed an investment of VND140 billion, including VND40 billion for transport, VND80 billion for refurbishment and VND20 billion for completion of procedures, consulting services and backup fee.
VNR will mobilize the capital, which is expected to be recovered within seven years. After being upgraded, the carriages are expected to be used for 15 years.
VNR General Director Dang Sy Manh said the cost of importing and repairing these carriages was much lower than the cost of manufacturing new ones or buying old carriages from other countries. Japan has transferred many old carriages to other countries in Southeast Asia, such as Myanmar, Indonesia and the Philippines, and these countries have put these carriages to use.
However, the import of old train carriages will face bottlenecks as Vietnam only allows the import of secondhand train carriages that have been used for no more than a decade.
If the Government approves the proposal, VNR will complete import procedures, upgrade the carriages and operate them safely and effectively.