In order to rush the vital Yunnan- Burma railway to completion, its western section is to be built on an ultra-narrow gauge of only 15¼ in. by a decision of Marshal Chiang Kai Shek. This section, 280 miles long between Tsuyung and the Burma border, was originally intended to have a gauge or 39 3-10 inches.
Work on the road is being pushed as a wartime necessity and the Generalissimo recently ordered com- pletion, by the end of the present year. Many regard this as utterly impossible, but in view of the urgent need, everything is being done to
speed things up.
It is expected that by adoption of narrower gauge there will be a major saving of both material and labour, while the engineering difficulty of this difficult line will also be rendered simple.
Even in the new gauge ordered, it is calculated that the railway should have a freight capacity of at least 300 tons daily, equalling the cap- acity of the French railway up from Indo-China to Kunming.
The P. and O. Company's profit for the year was £446,182, the amount brought forward being £170,309.