On September 4, TRA’s Neiwan Branch Line represented by TRA Director Chou Yong-hui and Nagaragawa Railway’s Etsuminan Line represented byNagaragawa Railway Co. Ltd’s President Hioki Toshiaki.signed a one-day pass exchange agreement at Zhudong Animation and Comic Creative Park. The ceremony was watched over by Hsinchu County magistrate Chiu Ching-chun, Minokamo City mayor Hiroto Fujii and others.
Minister of Transportation and Communications Chen Jian-Yu said that both the Nagaragawa Railway in Japan and the Neiwan Branch Line in Hsinchu County have beautiful scenery as well as attractive food. He hoped that this alliance will increase friendship between the two sides and promote their tourism industries. Director of TRA Chou Yong-hui said that a one-day pass for the Nagaragawa Railway’s Etsuminan Line costs 2700 yen, while a oneday pass for the Neiwan Line costs less than NT$100. Signing the agreement will, he said, strengthen Taiwan-Japan relations and allow railway culture to be more diverse and international.
Magistrate Chiustates that the county government has actively promoted the scenery along the Neiwan Branch Line and has made the railway line “Taiwan’s Comic Dream Park.” Neiwan is a township with historic value. In the Japanese colonial period, the bamboo, cement and other industries prospered. Today, it has become a popular tourist destination, receiving around 3.5 million visitors per year.
Nagaragawa Railway's President Hioki Toshiaki said that the railway runs from Mino-ota Station to Hokuno Station, passing through Tomika, Seki, Minoshi, and Gujo-Hachiman stations.It is 72.1 kilometers in length, and takes around two hours from start to end. A ride on the railway gives passengers a taste of Edo charm, a chance to experience ancient history and culture, and also an opportunity to buy souvenirs and special local products.