China-constructed urban railway in Vietnam begins commercial operation
A train running on Cat Linh-Ha Dong metro line in Hanoi, Vietnam, November 6, 2021. /Xinhua

A train running on Cat Linh-Ha Dong metro line in Hanoi, Vietnam, November 6, 2021. /Xinhua

The authorities of the Vietnamese capital Hanoi inaugurated the China-built Cat Linh-Ha Dong metro line project on Saturday, making it the first metro line in the country to start commercial operation.

The project was handed over to Hanoi by its investor, the Vietnamese Ministry of Transport, on the same day.

All metro passengers can enjoy free rides during the first 15 days of the commercial run.

After taking a free two-way trip on Saturday morning, Hoang Thi Huong, a 30-year-old passenger from Hanoi's Thanh Xuan district, said the metro line is as modern as those she had seen overseas.

"Taking these trains, I will no longer have to worry about congestion every morning while going to work," Huong told Xinhua, hoping that more urban railway projects will be constructed to ease transportation in the city.

The elevated line is more than 13 kilometers long with 12 stations. Each train has four carriages capable of carrying up to 1,000 passengers and the train travels at a maximum speed limit of 80 kilometers per hour.

The Cat Linh-Ha Dong elevated railway project officially started construction in October 2011. Its trial run was completed in December 2020, with more than 70,000 kilometers of tests on thousands of trips, enabling the system to operate commercially, according to its investors.

Tickets for passengers will be priced at 30,000 Vietnamese dong ($1.33) for a day pass and 200,000 Vietnamese dong ($8.83) for a monthly one.

(With input from Xinhua)

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