Beijing: A Chinese foreign ministry’s spokesperson on Monday warmly congratulated Pakistan for the opening of the Orange Line Metro Train (OLMT) and said that it was one of the most advanced railway transport projects in South Asia.
“I noted this information. This is good news. I like to send warm congratulations for the opening of this railway project,” Zhao Lijian said during his regular briefing while commenting on the launch of OLMT in Lahore.
The inaugural ceremony of OLMT was also held in Beijing, which was attended by senior authorities of China’s National Development Reforms Commission (NDRC), Pakistan Ambassador to China, Moin ul Haque, CR Norinko and top Chinese officials.
Zhao Lijian said that the Orange Line was an early harvest project under China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) and the opening of this project marked that Pakistan had entered era for metro train just like Chief Minister Usman Buzdar said at the launching ceremony.
Terming the Orange Line as one of the most advanced railway transport projects in South Asia, he said,
“It will provide the residents in Lahore with a modern, efficient, environment friendly and safe traffic service and also help the city to reduce air pollution.”
He observed that in its construction, this project had created more than 7,000 job opportunities and it would further provide 2,000 jobs after its operation and maintenance.
“The completion of Orange Line is another major outcome in the CPEC building and also a demonstration for all-weather partnership between China and Pakistan,” he added.
The spokesperson maintained that China would continue to work with Pakistan to make the Belt and Road and CPEC a high standard project.
According to reports, the Orange Line project comprises of 26 stations including two underground stations and tracks spanning over 27.12km and besides providing people with a world class transport system, the project intends to lessen traffic on the Multan Road.
As many as 250,000 persons are expected to commute daily using the Orange Line trains which will travel from the Dera Gujran station to Raiwind’s Ali Town from 07:30 am to 08:30 pm.
The train will cover a the 27km track in 45 minutes at a speed of 80km/h. The fare charged for a one-way trip will be Rs40.
Experts from China have trained Pakistani drivers on how to operate the train whereas the Lahore Waste Management Company will be responsible for the train’s cleanliness.
The trains, which will be run on electricity, will be provided power by eight grid stations.
The operational time of the trains is likely to be extended to 16 hours. Cameras have been installed on all routes of the train and inside it as well.