Minister of Transportation and Communications Tsai Duei (
Bureau of High Speed Rail Director-General Pang Chia-hua (
For example, the THSRC has not yet submitted the NT$5 billion (US$156 million) deposit required, Pang said.
Should the company meet all the outstanding requirements, the operational permit could be issued as soon as today, he said.
Pang added that the THSRC will face a stern challenge today, when advance tickets for the Lunar New Year holidays go on sale.
Ticket sales will begin at 6am today and the bureau expects some would-be travelers to queue-up at the high speed rail stations.
Although the THSRC will soon be permitted to operate between Banciao and Taipei, several media reports have speculated that the high speed rail may not do so in time for the Lunar New Year holidays since the company has encountered difficulties with its ticketing system and train schedules. Those in Taipei choosing to take the high speed rail during this time will probably still be required to board from the high speed rail station in Banciao.
Pang said the company and the bureau had reached a consensus that the high speed rail would operate between Banciao and Tsoying (
He urged the company to come up with a comprehensive plan that took all possible scenarios into account.
"The bottom line is that the company has to finalize its plan and announce it to the public as soon as possible," he said, "[The THSRC] must stop making plans only to change them the next day."
Pang also suggested possible solutions to the problem. For example, he said, if the THSRC was only able to sell tickets from Banciao to Tsoying (
THSRC spokesman Arthur Chiang (
It will take some time for the THSRC to reorganize its train schedule before applying for a license, he added.
The THSRC's decision not to operate between Taipei and Banciao during the Lunar New Year holidays was also prompted by technical concerns, he said.
The ticketing system and gates in THSRC stations have been found to malfunction frequently, especially during peak hours, Chiang said.
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