BOGOTA, Nov. 27 (Xinhua) -- Colombian President Ivan Duque on Wednesday lauded the signing of a contract with APCA Transmimetro, a Chinese railway construction consortium, to build the first subway line in its capital Bogota.
Colombian President Ivan Duque (File photo: VCG)
"Bogota has been dreaming of this for decades. Today we take another step and I would say that it is the most important, the signing of the contract," said Duque.
"The formal construction of the subway starts now. The transformation of our capital starts now. The largest investment in the history of the city starts now," he said.
Presiding over the signing of the deal at the presidential headquarters in Bogota, Duque said that the project was set to further China-Colombia collaboration in infrastructure development.
"I am sure that the successful construction of Bogota's subway will open frontiers to more projects," he said, noting that the event coincided with the coming 40th anniversary of bilateral ties.
He also said that during a recent visit to China, he and Chinese officials spoke of the importance of "having more Chinese companies want to come to Colombia to invest in infrastructure projects."
The World Bank, the Inter-American Development Bank and the European Investment Bank are also participating in the project, which is expected to generate some 60,000 jobs, according to Duque.
Consortium APCA Transmimetro, comprised of China Harbour Engineering Company Ltd. and Xi'an Metro Company Ltd., will be involved in every aspect of the project, from design, partial financing, building the stations and supplying the trains, to operating the system for 20 years.