New Delhi: Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu has left for a five-day trip to France and Germany to explore various options on high speed segment and to strengthen technical cooperation in rail sector with these European countries.
Mr Prabhu will be visiting France on April 11-12 and Germany from April 13-15, 2016.
Mr Prabhu will be addressing the Emerging Market Forum in Paris and he will be meeting Alaon Vidalies, French Minister of State for Transport, Marine Affairs and fisheries to discuss bilateral cooperation programmes.
Currently, French Railway, SNCF, is involved with two projects – semi-high speed and station development – for which Indian Railways has signed agreement with France in April last year.
France is extending technical cooperation on semi-high speed project of increasing speed of Delhi-Chandigarh route to 200 km per hour from the existing speed of 110 kmph.
The technical and execution study of the 245 km route is jointly funded by India and France.
Besides, the study on station redevelopment of Ambala and Ludhiana stations based on French expertise is also being jointly funded on 50-50 basis.
Mr Prabhu will discuss on the projects and future cooperation in rail sector with SNCF officials, said a senior Railway Ministry official.
During his visit to Germany, Mr Prabhu will be meeting with German Federal Minister for Transportation and Digital Infrastructure and will discuss cooperation between Germany and India in the field of rail sector.
The German expertise in the field of High Speed Rail, increasing speed of existing routes, station development, multi modal logistics terminal and automobile logistics are of interest to India.
Feasibility study of one corridor for High Speed Rail as per German model is under discussion with German side.
Besides, Mr Prabhu will also be meeting German rail industries to offer investment opportunities in rail sector in India.