State Looking to Chinese for High Speed Rail Help

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Chinese laborers did it before in California, and this time it may be Chinese technology.

California’s High-Speed Rail Authority is talking to practically every nation that runs a high-speed train, but according to the New York Times today, China may have the inside track when it comes to actually building the San Francisco to Anaheim railroad.

“We are the most advanced in many fields, and we are willing to share with the United States,” Zheng Jian, the chief planner and director of high-speed rail at China’s railway ministry, said.

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger of California has closely followed progress in the discussions with China and hopes to come here later this year for talks with rail ministry officials, said David Crane, the governor’s special adviser for jobs and economic growth, and a board member of the California High Speed Rail Authority.

China is offering not just to build a railroad in California but also to help finance its construction, and Chinese officials have already been shuttling between Beijing and Sacramento to make presentations, Mr. Crane said in a telephone interview.

However, as my story last week detailed, the state has so far stumbled badly as it tries to implement a high-speed rail initiative passed by voters in 2008.



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