A caravan of Japanese politicians and transportation officials rolled into LA on Friday for a seminar related to the proposed California high-speed rail link, notes the pro high-speed rail California High-Speed Rail blog. Part of the group was Japanese Ambassador to the U.S. Ichiro Fujisaki, who is quite the proponent of the contentious $43 billion project. "The ambassador stated that he believes Japan will pay for up to half of the cost of the California’s HSR," reports the CHSR blog. Well, more like loan. The Japan Bank for International Cooperation, a state-owned operation, has already been authorized to help finance American train projects. The Chairman of Japan’s Council for Global Promotion of Railways said at the presentation that the bank's loan terms would be "long" to ease repayment. China has previously expressed interest helping build the high-speed system, and countries like Germany, South Korea, Spain, France and Italy have also approached the High-Speed Rail Authority, according to an older New York Times story.
· Ambassador: "We'll put up half the money for high-speed rail." [CHSR blog]
· High-Speed Rail Porn [Curbed LA]