Taiwan's rapid economic growth during the latter half of the twentieth century led to congestion of highways, conventional rail, and air traffic systems in the western transport corridor, which threatened to impede the region's development.:?125? The idea of a new high-speed rail line arose in the 1970s, and informal planning began in 1980. In 1987, the executive branch of Taiwan's government, the Executive Yuan, instructed the Ministry of Transportation to launch a feasibility study for a high-speed rail line in the western Taiwan corridor, which was completed in 1990. The study found that in a comparison of potential solutions to traffic problems in the corridor, a high-speed rail line would offer the highest transit volume, lowest land use, highest energy savings, and least pollution. In July 1990 the Preparation Office of High Speed Rail was established and a route was selected in 1991. Plans for the THSR were subsequently approved by the Executive Yuan in June 1992 and by Taiwan's legislature, the Legislative Yuan, in 1993.
In November 1994, Taiwan passed a law regarding the use of private finance in infrastructure projects, which also applied to the up-to-then state-run THSR project. Consequently, in 1995, POHSR was transformed into the Bureau of High Speed Rail , which started to tender THSR as a build-operate-transfer scheme in October 1996.The bidding process pitted Taiwan High Speed Rail Consortium against the Chunghwa High Speed Rail Consortium . THSRC's bid was based on the high-speed technology platform of Eurotrain, a joint venture between GEC-Alsthom, the main maker of the French TGV, and Siemens, the main maker of the German ICE, while CHSRC's bid was based on Japanese Shinkansen technology supplied by Taiwan Shinkansen Consortium , a joint venture of Japanese companies. THSRC, which submitted the lower bid and promised to build the line with zero net cost from the government, was chosen as preferred bidder in September 1997. The group was renamed and formally established as the Taiwan High Speed Rail Corporation in May 1998. THSRC and the government signed the BOT agreement on 23 July 1998.However, controversy arose during rolling-stock selection. In May 1999, as THSRC faced difficulties in raising capital, the government of Japan promised soft loans if THSRC switched to TSC. Although Eurotrain promised to match TSC's financial proposal, the Eschede train disaster in combination with TSC offering the newer 700 Series Shinkansen, convinced THSRC to reopen its core system bid, ultimately resulting in TSC selected as the preferred rolling-stock supplier in December 1999. Although Eurotrain eventually conceded in the bid, in February 2001 it filed for a US$800 million damage claim against THSRC at the Singapore International Arbitration Centre. After a lengthy arbitration process, the court ruled in March 2004 that THSRC should pay a compensation for the US$32.4 million Eurotrain spent on development and US$35.7 million for unjust enrichment. THSRC agreed to pay US$65 million to Eurotrain in November 2004.
Opening and expansion
The railway opened in 2007 between Taipei and Zuoying. Four additional stations were added in 2014 and 2015.
On 10 September 2019, the Executive Yuan announced that the railway would be expanded to Pingtung. Out of four proposed route options, it was confirmed on 27 September that the expansion would bypass central Kaohsiung, branching from Zuoying east towards western Pingtung City, near Liukuaicuo, with an estimated cost of NT$55.4 billion. Although lowest in cost, the option was met with criticism regarding its economic benefits.On 25 October 2019, the Railway Bureau published an assessment report to extend the line from Taipei to Yilan, cutting travel time to 13 minutes. The extension route was approved in October 2020.
Mr. Griffin Huang (Assistant VP of Accounting Department of Fin. Division)
Mr. Barret Wang (Sr. VP of Admin., Board Secretariat Sec. & Corp. Governance Officer)
Ms. Mandy Ko (Assistant VP of Legal Office)
Ms. Elaine Tsou (Assistant VP of Public Affairs Office)
Mr. Tim Fu (VP of Procurement Division & HR Division)
Mr. Felix Hsu (Assistant VP of HR Division)
Ms. Rae-Fang Chung (Head of Bus. Division, VP of Corp. Planning Division & Spokesperson)
Recognition and Awards
Mr. Kung-Yeun Jeng (CEO & Pres)
Mr. Allen Wang (VP of Fin. Division)
Andy Lu (Sr. VP of Operation)