Cambodia and Thailand resume rail services after 45 years

23 April 2019 (Last Updated April 23rd, 2019 12:27)

Cambodia and Thailand have revived a cross-border railway link 45 years after its closure to cut travel times and encourage trade between the countries.

Cambodia and Thailand have revived a cross-border railway link 45 years after its closure to cut travel times and encourage trade between the countries.

It inaugurated by Cambodian Prime Minister Samdech Techo Hun Sen and Thai Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha.

The rail link connects Poipet town railway station in Cambodia with Ban Khlong Luek railway station in Thailand’s Aranyaprathet district.

Both countries entered an agreement for the cross-border railway services, following which Hun Sen and Prayut boarded the maiden journey from Thailand’s Ban Khlong Luek station to Cambodia’s Poipet station.

“Railway services between the two countries were suspended in 1974 due to internal conflicts in Cambodia.”

Delivered by Thailand, the train comprises a diesel-powered locomotive with four passenger coaches. Each of these coaches accommodates 80 seats.

Cambodian Prime Minister Samdech Techo Hun Sen said: “Reconnecting railroads between Cambodia and Thailand not only contributes to the development of economies in the two countries, but also expands railway connectivity in ASEAN and in the Greater Mekong Subregion.”

Railway services between the two countries were suspended in 1974 due to internal conflicts in Cambodia.

According to AFP, the country re-opened the final 370km railway stretch from its capital Phnom Penh to the Thailand border last year. This facilitated recommencing railway services between the two countries.

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) also supported the construction of the rail link with an investment of $13m.