Tenders for phase two of the Budapest-Belgrade railway line are due on January 19, 2018, it has been announced.
The 350-kilometer railway will link Budapest with Belgrade. Trains will travel at over 200 kph and the journey time will be cut from 8 hours to just 2 and a half.
The line will be constructed by the Chinese-Hungarian Railway Nonprofit Ltd, and the new contract concerns activities from design, procurement, construction, to commissioning and final handover of the project.
The upgrade is for a 152km railway line stretching between Soroksár, on the outskirts of Budapest, and Kelebia, and candidates will be selected March 19 next year.
The duration of the contract is for 86 months and covers construction of 374 track kilometers, 18 grade-separated and 89 level crossings, and 590.4 meters of bridges.
Upgrading the line in Hungary is expected to cost 550 billion HUF (1.7bn EUR) and could start by the end of 2020, Péter Szijjártó, minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade, said.
The minister said China wants to use the rail line as part of a corridor for the export of goods to Europe and to help build Hungarian-Chinese relations.