- Taiwan Strait Tunnel Project
The Taiwan Strait Tunnel Project is an
Undersea tunnelor bridge proposed primarily by the Chinese government to link Pingtan in China to Hsinchu in Taiwan. However, the project has never been considered realistic in Taiwan because of its staggering cost, technical difficulties, dubious economic benefits, and risks to Taiwanese national security. At nearly 150 km, the proposed tunnel would be nearly 3 times the length of the Channel Tunnel across the English Channel. In addition to the cross-strait tunnel, China envisions four other tunnels, between Hong Kong-Macao-Guangzhou-Shenzhen-Zhuhai, Dalian-Yantai, Shanghai-Ningbo, and Guangdong-Hainan. The project also includes the construction of bridges in areas that have technical problems with the rock and soil. Construction has begun on the first tunnel in Xiamen, Fujian. The 9 kilometer tunnel of which 6 of the kilometers is under the sea, is expected to be completed in the year 2010. [ [http://big5.fmprc.gov.cn:89/gate/big5/us.china-embassy.org/eng/zt/twwt/t195533.htm Undersea tunnel planned to link mainland to Taiwan(05/13/05) ] ]
In April 2007, a feasibility seminar was held by traffic association of Fujian Province and Taiwan Chinese road association to discuss the project. The meeting explored structures, technologies and research endeavors for the “passway”. Scholars and experts are still considering many engineering, technical, and construction issues for both sides of the Taiwan Strait. [ [http://www.fjjt.gov.cn/english/picnew/200704/20070428.htm News ] ] There has been no substantial progress in the cross-strait tunnel project since this seminar.
While its proponents in Beijing envisage the project as boosting economic ties between Taiwan and China, the Taiwan Strait Tunnel Project is generally thought not to be a financially viable project due to its likely astronomical costs and technical difficulties. Moreover, as long as authoritarian Beijing threatens democratic Taiwan's security with military force, Taiwanese are unlikely to be receptive of a physical connection with China.
* [http://www.ingentaconnect.com/content/tandf/umgt/2004/00000022/00000003/art00005 An Engineering Concept of the Taiwan Strait Tunnel]
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