Egypt awards British Steel Contract to Supply Tracks for High-Speed Railway Project

There are high hopes that “The Green Line” will revolutionise a decaying transport system in the Arab World’s most populous country.

Introduced to Egypt in 1851 during the reign of Khedive Abbas, the railway service the first in the region and the second in the world after the UK. [Getty]
The Egyptian government recently awarded British Steel a major contract to supply tracks for a major railway project, “The Green Line”, the country’s first fully electrified mainline and freight network. 

The UK-based company said in a statement on Tuesday that 9,500 tonnes of tracks, produced in Scunthorpe in England, will be delivered for the Green Line, stretching from the Red Sea to the Mediterranean.

Two rail shipments, one this month and the other later in June, are set to be transported from the British company to Egypt’s Mediterranean port of Alexandria.

“We are delighted British Steel has been awarded this contract and to be involved in such a transformational project for Egypt, which will bring significant improvements to the transport network,” said Jérôme Bonef, the company’s Commercial Manager for Export and Rail.

“The British Steel rail business prides itself on providing value solutions to our customers, being easy to trade with whilst providing on-time deliveries with world-leading quality,” he added.

Neither the Egyptian government nor the UK-based company has officially declared the exact value of the deal, and Egypt’s Ministry of Transport could not be reached for comment at the time of publication.

Last month, the high-speed rail Green Line project was awarded to a consortium consisting of Orascom Construction and Arab Contractors Joint Venture, with the design, construction, commissioning and operation of the line handled by the state-run National Authority for Tunnels.

The Green Line is expected to revolutionise the transport system of the Arab World’s most populous country by constructing a high-speed network that reduces primary energy usage and total air pollution. It will extend from Alexandria via El-Alamein city to the Mediterranean coast in the northwest and eastwards to the Gulf of Suez and the Red Sea.

The project will utilise Siemens electric trains to link major cities and towns in Egypt through a network of 21 stations.  The 660-kilometre-long rail network will carry freight and passenger trains up to a maximum speed of 250 kilometres per hour.

Introduced to Egypt in 1851 during the reign of Khedive Abbas, the railway service was the first in the region and the second in the world after the United Kingdom. Much of the sector’s infrastructure is believed to be owed to that era.

Over the past years, the Egyptian railway network has been known for having a poor safety record. Several deadly train incidents have occurred over time amid, arguably, a significant absence of decisive accountability.

Source:: The New Arab

Kehinde Olusegun

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