LA PAZ, March 1 (Xinhua) -- The Bolivian government confirmed Wednesday that a group of countries would meet on March 21-22 to discuss details about a trans-oceanic railway, which would link South America's Atlantic and Pacific coasts.
Deputy transport minister Galo Bonifaz told a press conference that delegations from Germany, Brazil, Peru, Paraguay and Uruguay had been confirmed.
Apart from these five countries, delegations from other countries may attend, such as Switzerland, which is interested in financing part of a project described by Bolivia as the Panama Canal of the 21st century.
According to the Bolivian government, the governors of several Brazilian states, the Paraguay Minister of Public Works, Ramon Jimenez Gaona, the Peruvian Vice-President, Martin Vizcarra and the German Deputy Minister of Transport and Digital Infrastructure, Rainer Bomba, will all attend.
A preliminary study estimated the project would cost at least 10 billion U.S. dollars, with Germany and Switzerland having shown an interest in investing.
The governments of Bolivia, Peru and Paraguay have also created a working group to accelerate the construction of the project and hope Brazil will soon join as well, said Bonifaz.
The project, officially known as the Central Bi-oceanic Railway Corridor, is initially planned to join the port of Santos on Brazil's Atlantic coast and the port of Ilo on Peru's Pacific Coast.
Four pre-investment studies have also been carried out by Bolivia to propose solutions to the project's possible problems.
These studies have respectively tackled trade and logistics; a strategy for the railway's corridor, an environmental strategy evaluation, course, design and cost of construction and operation.