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Vietnam's first urban railway enters service

China-backed $900m commuter line in Hanoi opens after 6 year-delay

The Hanoi Metro Line 2A, originally scheduled to open in 2015, was delayed by 12 project reevaluations and over two years of safety checks. (photo by Tomoya Onishi)

HANOI -- Vietnam's first urban railway, a roughly $900 million project backed by China, began service in Hanoi on Saturday, following long delays for safety checks and to secure the land needed.

The Hanoi Metro Line 2A, construction on which started in 2011, is a 13 km, 12-station rail line between Cat Linh and Yen Nghia in central Hanoi. Vietnam paid for much of the project with official development assistance from China. China Railway Sixth Group, a subsidiary of China Railway Group, handled the line's engineering, procurement and construction.

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