Government’s initiatives to build a rail link between Dhaka and Cox’s Bazar progress. Two agreements in this connection were signed Thursday and another will be signed Saturday.
The government will construct a single line dual gauge railway track from Dohazari of Chittagong to Cox's Bazaar via Ramu and another rail track from Ramu to Gundum.
The 100-kilometer single-line dual-gauge railway from Chittagong's Dohazari village to Cox's Bazar via Ramu will cut travel time by four hours between Dhaka and the coastal resort city, report agencies.
The construction of the new route, marked as a fast-track project, will also form part of the Trans-Asian Railway (TAR) route to connect Bangladesh to its regional neighbours, including China, Myanmar and Thailand.
In this connection the government Thursday signed the two agreements, one on appointing the consultant for the Dohazari-Ramu-Cox's Bazar rail project and the other on purchasing 200 passenger carriages for the Railway.
Railway Minister Mujibul Haque was present at the signing of two separate deals on rail sector development at the Rail Bhaban in the capital city.
Indonesian Ambassador to Dhaka Rina P. Soemarno attended the event.
As per the first agreement, three foreign firms from Australia, Canada and France and two from Bangladesh will jointly give consultancy services in the next five years to build the Dohazari-Ramu-Cox's Bazar rail line by 2022.
Under the second agreement, Indonesian railway industry manufacturer, PT Inka, will provide BR with 200 carriages for Tk 5.79 billion(579 crore).
The carriages for the metre-gauge line will be shipped to Bangladesh in next 33 months.
"The government has attached the highest importance to railway sector development for establishing and ensuring a safe and faster communication infrastructure," the minister said.
He said more development projects including circular rail service around the capital city, separate rail bridge on Jamuna river and rail line on Padma Bridge would be implemented in phases.
Asian Development Bank (ADB) is providing financial support to implement rail sector development projects.
Bangladesh Railway (BR) is set to sign another deal Saturday to construct the rail line connecting Dohazari and Cox's Bazar via Ramu.