Work starts on Myanmar’s railway projects
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The groundbreaking ceremony was recently held for the Yangon-Mandalay Railway Improvement Project Phase I (Contract CP101 – civil works for the Pazundaung-Bago section) and Yangon Circular Railway Line Upgrading Project (Contract CP201 – signalling works). Both projects are being commissioned under the loan scheme of the Japanese Official Development Assistance (ODA), provided by the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA).

The Yangon-Mandalay Railway Improvement Project is being built in two phases, comprising the Yangon-Taungoo Section (Phase I) and Taungoo-Mandalay Section (Phase II). The project aims to rehabilitate and modernise the old facilities and equipment in the section between Yangon and Taungoo, of the existing railway that connects Myanmar's largest and second largest cities (Yangon and Mandalay), as well as to promote safer and faster train service, enhance the capacity for passenger and cargo transport, and eventually contribute to Myanmar's economic growth.

The loan agreements for Yangon-Mandalay Railway Improvement Project (Phase I) were signed on 5 September 2014 (for JPY 20 billion) and 1 March 2017 (for JPY 25 billion) respectively. The project includes civil and track works, installation of signal and telecommunication systems, and also procurement of rolling stock and consulting services. Phase I is expected to be completed in 2023.

The Yangon Circular Railway (YCR) Line Upgrading Project aims to improve the efficiency of passenger transport capacity and the safe and comfortable public transport services of YCR Line, by rehabilitating and replacing the existing railway facilities and the rolling stock, thereby contributing to the social and economic development of Greater Yangon.

The loan agreement for the Yangon-Mandalay Railway Line Upgrading Project was signed on 16 October 2015 for JPY 24.866 billion. Slated for completion in 2023, the project includes improvement of signalling works, procurement of a new diesel electric multiple unit (DEMU) (rolling stock) and consulting services.