03 May 19 - Source: Global New Light Of Myanmar - The Myanma Railway is making efforts to ensure efficient rail transport with the help of the country's development partner Japan. As part of the collaboration, steel rails for laying alongside the Yangon-Mandalay railroad were brought in from Japan and unloaded at Yangon Port yesterday.
"In the afternoon on 1 May, 2,800 tons of steel rails were unloaded from a ship docked at the port. The Yangon-Mandalay railway is being upgraded in two phases. Phase I covers the Yangon-Taungoo route and Phase II involves the Taungoo-Mandalay route. Three rail sections will be upgraded in Phase 1 — Yangon-Bago, Bago-Nyaunglebin, and Nyaunglebin-Taungoo. The steel rails unloaded at the port are meant for the Bago-Nyaunglebin rail section," said U Zaw Lwin, the traffic manager for the No.7 Division of Myanma Railway. "At present, steel rails measuring 39 feet in length and weighing 75 pounds are being used for the Yangon-Mandalay railroad. They allow trains to run at an average speed of 35 miles per hour, although the maximum speed limit is 43 miles per hour. The steel tracks from Japan weigh 110 pounds and measure 82 feet in length. They will allow trains to run at 50-62 miles per hour on average," he added.
Steel track replacement work for the Bago-Nyaunglebin rail section will begin in October. Six ships will bring in steel tracks for the Yangon-Bago rail section, while seven ships will be used to carry steel tracks for upgrading the Bago-Nyaunglebin section, and nine ships will bring in steel tracks for the Nyanglebin-Taungoo section. Work on Phase I from Yangon to Taungoo is slated to be completed in the 2022-2023 fiscal year. Japan will provide technical assistance for steel track replacement work to ensure smooth transportation.—Myint Maung Soe (Translated by Ei Myat Mon)