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Good News Finally For Brazil: New Train On Time For Rio Olympics

New VLT Network
New VLT Network
Graciela Gioberchio

RIO DE JANEIRO — Authorities in Rio de Janeiro have inaugurated the first part of a light city railway designed to ferry about hundreds of thousands of visitors and sports players arriving in the Brazilian city for the Olympic games due to start in August.

The new VLT network, a multinational project involving firms like France's Alstom and Argentina's Benito Roggio, will connect major tourist attractions including the beaches at Copacabana, the airport and the main train station.

Working around the clock, the light rail is expected to carry up to 190,000 people a day and hopes to add another 200,000 passengers by 2036. The project was conceived in 2010 when the city began thinking of ways to boost public transport, reduce pollution and cut personal car use. City officials wanted an option that was comfortable, quiet, punctual and environment-friendly.

The railway's first line operated without passengers last May in order to gradually integrate it with traffic. Roggio, which has 15 engineers involved in the project, told Clarín that the trains use the latest fuel technology. The rail has replaced all masts and overhead cables with a system of batteries fed through the ground at various points on the tracks.

The finished system will have six lines — yellow, blue, red, green, lilac and orange — and will serve 42 stations.

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How A Xi Jinping Dinner In San Francisco May Have Sealed Mastercard's Arrival In China

The credit giant becomes only the second player after American Express to be allowed to set up a bank card-clearing RMB operation in mainland China.

Photo of a hand holding a phone displaying an Union Pay logo, with a Mastercard VISA logo in the background of the photo.

Mastercard has just been granted a bank card clearing license in China.

Liu Qianshan


It appears that one of the biggest beneficiaries from Chinese President Xi Jinping's visit to San Francisco was Mastercard.

The U.S. credit card giant has since secured eagerly anticipated approval to expand in China's massive financial sector, having finally obtained long sought approval from China's central bank and financial regulatory authorities to initiate a bank card business in China through its joint venture with its new Chinese partner.

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Through a joint venture in China between Mastercard and China's NetsUnion Clearing Corporation, dubbed Mastercard NUCC, it has officially entered mainland China as an RMB currency clearing organization. It's only the second foreign business of its kind to do so following American Express in 2020.

The Wall Street Journal has reported that the development is linked to Chinese President Xi Jinping's meeting on Nov. 15 with U.S. President Joe Biden in San Francisco, part of a two-day visit that also included dinner that Xi had with U.S. business executives.

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