BEIJING, Dec. 21 (Xinhua) -- Chinese Premier Li Keqiang on Thursday sent a congratulatory message on the launch of the construction of the first phase of the China-Thailand railway project.
Thai Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha attended the opening ceremony of the project held Thursday in Kele, northern Thailand.
The China-Thailand railway project is a flagship project of bilateral cooperation in the Belt and Road Initiative and production capacity, which reflects the spirit of wide consultation, joint construction and shared benefits, Li said in the message.
It is a win-win project, and will effectively enhance the infrastructure construction and interconnectivity in Thailand and the region, facilitate the sustainable development of Thailand, drive the development and prosperity in the region and improve the people's livelihood, Li said.
The Chinese premier hoped the two sides would continue to keep close cooperation, complete the first phase of the China-Thailand railway with high quality, steadily push ahead the related work about the second phase of the project, and strive to realize the interconnection of the China-Thailand railway and the China-Laos railway.
That will facilitate the trade and travel of people in the countries along the railway, and achieve a win-win situation, he added.
Li also noted that China attaches great importance to the development of the friendly relations between China and Thailand.
China is willing to work together with Thailand to strengthen their respective development strategies, and constantly advance the win-win pragmatic cooperation between the two countries with the railway cooperation project and to further promote the comprehensive strategic partnership between the two counties, he said.
The planned China-Thai railway stretches 867 km, from Nong Khai on the Thai-Lao border to Rayong in eastern Thailand. The initial phase, at 252 km long, runs between Bangkok and Nakhon Ratchasima.
The railway is planned to connect with China-Lao railway from Vientiane to Kunming in China's southern Yunnan Province, and to extend through the south, via Kuala Lumpur, capital of Malaysia, and finally ending in Singapore.