Railways awards 39,000 trains’ contract to Chinese player
Indian Railways has awarded a contract for supply of 39,000 train wheels to a Chinese company after deliveries from other countries got affected due to the Russia-Ukraine conflict. The tender for solid forged wheels (rough turned) was awarded to TZ (Taizhong) Hong Kong International Ltd, said official sources, adding that these wheels are for the Vande Bharat trains. This development can be seen as a fall out of the Russia-Ukraine crisis as there is a dearth of rail wheel suppliers to India. While the value of the tender is just ₹170 crore, the move is significant in view of the restrictions imposed by New Delhi last July on investments and supplies from companies from countries sharing land border with India following the Galwan valley standoff with China and the last tender awarded to TZ was in March 2020. As a matter of fact, any vendor from countries sharing a land border with India would be eligible to supply goods or services--including consultancy and non-consultancy services-or projects, including turnkey ones, only if the entity is registered with the competent authority. A registration committee was subsequently constituted by the Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT). Political and security clearances from the ministries of external and home affairs was also made mandatory and the tender for wheels was opened recently and the railway ministry awarded the contract to TZ on May 2. According to the Railway Board's order awarding the tender, the place of manufacture of these wheels is Taiyuan Heavy Industry Railway Transit Equipment Company at Dianzi Steet in Taiyuan City, Shanxi, China. This is a part of Taiyuan Heavy Industry Co, Ltd (TYHI). TZ Hong Kong International Ltd, the company that has been awarded the tender, is the international trading arm of Taiyuan Heavy Machinery Group Co, Ltd. This company too traces its origins to a heavy machine plant founded in 1950 which was independently designed and built by the People's Republic of China, claimed official sources.
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