The Netherlands has inaugurated the high-speed rail line connecting its capital city Amsterdam with Rotterdam.

The line is part of the under-construction HSL-Zuid high-speed rail line to connect the Netherlands and Belgium.

The Amsterdam-Rotterdam rail line will have seven ICR coaches hauled by Bombardier‘s Traxx electric locomotives running at a speed of 160kmph.

This will allow passengers to travel the 72km distance in 43 minutes, with 17 weekday return trips.

From mid-December, Thalys trains will be used on the line running at up to 160kmph between Schiphol and Rotterdam and at 300kmph from south of Rotterdam to Antwerpen.

The line will be operated by NS Hispeed, the Netherlands Railways’ high-speed operations brand name.

The line will be extended to serve Breda and Brussels from mid-June 2010.