Taiwan excludes China from tender for 8 high-speed trains

Decision about winning bid to be announced halfway 2020

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Taiwan is looking to buy 8 high-speed train sets, but not from China.

Taiwan is looking to buy 8 high-speed train sets, but not from China. (By Central News Agency)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – The Taiwan High Speed Rail Corporation (THSRC) confirmed Saturday (August 10) it was not considering China as a supplier of eight new trains.

The company had already launched an international tender for eight trains it would decide on in mid-2020, but China was not among the countries it would consider, the Central News Agency (CNA) reported.

The process started two years ago when the company saw the number of its passengers rising and felt the need to add new trains. It issued the international tender in July, with bids welcome until October, according to CNA.

At present, THSRC has at its disposal 34 trainsets of 12 coaches each, mostly the 700T series based on the Shinkansen bullet trains especially adapted for Japan by Kawasaki Heavy Industries of Japan. Their top speed is 300 kilometers per hour.

The sum the company is willing to spend on new trainsets and their design is confidential, a THSRC spokesman said, but most trains from all countries can be suitable to Taiwanese conditions, he said.

In 2015, the number of THSRC passengers exceeded 50 million for the first time, with 60 million in 2017 and a total of more than 63.9 million last year, CNA reported.