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(Source: Agenda 21st century Taiwan) In Coronavirus Pandemic, It’s the Best Choice for Developing Railway Technology and Overtaking on Corners

Industry: Politics & Political Organizations

European Train Control System (ETCS) that is a train signal, control and protection system developed to replace various incompatible railway safety systems of European railways could be considered to its architecture.

Los Angeles, CA (PRUnderground) April 28th, 2020

As the Covid-19 tremendously impacts the global economy, growths of industries have been slowed down, even essential businesses are stagnant. But crisis often creates opportunities, one example is India Railway (IR). The IR decided to undergo a thorough reform on both of its passenger department and freight department. Meanwhile, it draws out a blueprint for its growth of the next five to ten years.

At the same time in Oceania, the  in New Zealand urges the improvement of inter-city railway to provide environment-friendly choice of traveling, while creating more jobs to stimulate economy during Covid-19. If Green Party’s motion is passed, a large-scale investment and construction will be proceeded in the coming decade, and major cities throughout the country will be connected with Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch.

Coincidentally, a $70 Billion project for railway planning and construction has taken shape in Taiwan, including railways (28 items, $26 Billion), rapid transit (20 items, $38.5 Billion), and light rails (10 items, $5.5 Billion). However, the major challenge of this grand project is no uniformed protocols and compatibility considerations for all the different railway systems in Taiwan.

According to the analysis of Prof. Po-Hsiang Liu who is an expert of human factors engineering and transportation safety from St. John’s University, people living in the five cities with populations over 3 million in Taiwan prefer traveling with scooters or motorcycles. Statistically, the ratio of population to number of scooters/motorcycles is 1.6:1, population to cars 2.85: 1. Compared to the US, whose ratio of population to number of cars is 1.25, in Taiwan, the ratio of population to scooters/motorcycles or cars is 1.05. It is because public transits are not fully developed in cities other than Taipei, and railways connecting the north and the south are insufficient. Taiwan should continue to develop its railway systems, connecting intercity railway particularity. The most crucial factor is compatible of railway systems for transportation safety. European Train Control System (ETCS) that is a train signal, control and protection system developed to replace various incompatible railway safety systems of European railways could be considered to its architecture.

Although the budget for the future railway construction is as high as $70 Billion, its benefits to local industries might be very limited since many Taiwanese businesses are not independently sustainable. Taiwan’s government therefore plans to integrate railway related industries into a model of railway technology development. Nevertheless, compared to Europe and Japan, the market scale in Taiwan might not be enough to sustain a business operating at the level of billions of dollars. Additionally, without a complete industrial chain and lack of planning experiences, Taiwanese businesses are not capable in planning and design. Optimistic as he is, Prof. Liu nevertheless has to remind Taiwan’s policy makers that, never overlook the necessity of a global perspective. In this international competition, vision determines the winner.

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