Chinese-built Belgrade-Novi Sad railway celebrates 1st anniversary
NOVI SAD, Serbia, March 19 (Xinhua) -- The Chinese-built Belgrade-Novi Sad high-speed railway marked its first anniversary on Sunday, having transported nearly 3 million people between Serbia's two largest cities since operation last year.
The around 80-km-long, Belgrade-Novi Sad railway section has been carrying passengers at speeds of up to 200 km per hour since March 2022.
The anniversary also marked a significant turning point in the further development of Serbia, Ana Brnabic, Serbia's prime minister, said at the ceremony at the Novi Sad railway station.
"Today ... we know that we are capable, and we are ready to move forward, and we know that we will construct the remaining section to the border with Hungary," she said, referring to the about 350-km-long Belgrade-Budapest railway.
Brnabic praised the achievements in vital infrastructure projects, trade, and investments under the comprehensive strategic partnership between Serbia and China. She also said that the country aims to intensify exchange with China, especially in technologies.
The Belgrade-Novi Sad railway section is "a symbol and a fine example of mutually beneficial cooperation between China and Serbia within the Belt and Road initiative," said Chen Bo, Chinese ambassador to Serbia.
Since its operation, the Belgrade-Novi Sad high-speed railway had been operating well, and it had significantly improved Serbian people and foreign tourists' travel experience, Chen said.
"The operation of the railway proved in practice that the section was built with high technology, reliable engineering, and delivered significant economic and social benefits," said Ju Guojiang, chairman of China Railway International Co., Ltd.
Ju said that "the new beginning inspires new hope." He stressed that his company is committed to the delivery of the remaining Novi Sad-Subotica section as soon as possible and with the highest quality possible.
Construction of the second section, 108.1-km-long between Novi Sad and Subotica, started in November 2021.