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China companies join US high-speed rail project

18 September 2015 06:30 pm - 0     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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AFP - A Chinese rail consortium is teaming up with private US firm XpressWest to push forward a high-speed rail project linking Las Vegas with Los Angeles, the companies said Thursday.

The proposed new rail link, dubbed the Southwest Rail Network, “will drive new economic development and grow the tourism industry which is vital to the economy of the region,” they said in a joint statement.

The Las Vegas-based XpressWest is entering a joint venture with a newly formed Nevada company, China Railway International USA.

China Railway International USA is a consortium including China Railway International, China Railway Group Limited, CRRC Qingdao Sifang, China Construction America and CRSC International.

“The project will serve as a model of international cooperation and will firmly establish a United States-based high-speed rail industry that will result in significant job creation throughout the Southwest with construction planned to commence as early as September 2016,” they said.

The announcement came ahead of next week’s state visit by Chinese President Xi Jinping to the United States, a high-profile swing that includes a welcome by President Barack Obama at the White House and a visit to Boeing’s main airplane factory in Seattle.

The United States has lagged far behind China, Japan and Europe in high-speed rail development, while China has blazed ahead, building 17,000 kilometers (bout 10,600 miles) of railway in the 12 years since it began constructing bullet trains.

XpressWest and its Chinese partner said the Nevada-California project is supported by $100 million in initial capital and they would immediately seek all regulatory approvals.

XpressWest is a private interstate high-speed passenger railroad company led by the Marnell Companies, which also specializes in architecture and construction in the US gaming capital.
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