Taipei, Dec. 30 (CNA) Passengers will be allowed to travel free of cost on the new airport MRT line during the period of trial runs, Taoyuan Mayor Cheng Wen-tsan (鄭文燦) said Friday.
In the first two weeks of the one-month trial period, free passes will be given to people traveling in groups, once they apply in advance, he said.
In the last two weeks of the trial period, travel will be free for all individual passengers on the line, which will run between Taipei and Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport, Cheng said.
When the line begins commercial operations, 50 percent discounts will be offered to passengers for the first month, he said, adding that further details will be given later.
He made the announcement after the Ministry of Transportation and Communications said earlier in the day that it had completed its second round of inspections of the system and had identified eight areas that would need improvements before commercial operations could begin.
Transportation Minister Ho Chen Tan (賀陳旦) said that most of the improvements could be completed within a short time and that his ministry was "optimistically looking forward" to issuing an operation permit for the airport MRT line to begin trial runs before the Lunar New Year holiday.
The 51.03-kilometer line will serve more than 20 stations from Taipei to Taoyuan, including 14 from Taipei Main Station to Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport.
It will take about 36 minutes between Taipei Main Station and the Taoyuan airport, according to the Taoyuan Metro Corp.
(By Wang Shu-fen and Elaine Hou)