An influential coalition of businessmen, retired generals and politicians are attempting to revive the proposed Kra canal project which would see a 135 kilometre canal run across Southern Thailand, linking the Indian and Pacific Oceans
The Project estimated to cost $35 billion is being hailed as the Asian equivalent of the Panama Canal and if built would save ships at least 1200 kilometres and three days travel time.
This would mean ships could bypass the narrow, congested and piracy prone Malacca Strait which connects china and Japan to Middle Eastern oil fields, Europe, Africa and India.
A group called the Thai Canal Association of Study and Development is attempting to persuade Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-o-cha to approve a study into the proposed project.
If the project gets the go ahead it would be one of the most ambitious projects ever attempted in Asia.
A survey has already been carried out on a proposed route for the canal by Beijing University and a Chinese company called the Grand Dragon International Holding Company.
The canal if constructed would be 450-metres-wide and 26-metres deep making it capable of conveying the world’s biggest ships.
The canal referred to as the Kra Canal, was first devised by the king of Thailand in 1677 and the idea has been re-suggested over the years but it appears it might now become a reality.
Documents were leaked to the press in 2005 stating that China was prepared to back the project which had an estimated build time of 10 years and needed 30,000 workers to complete.
The project is set to be discussed at an international conference in Bangkok this September.
Source : SMH
Content : LovePattayaThailand