Egypt begins construction of the Suez Canal railway

This 660-kilometre high-speed line will connect the Red Sea city of Ain Sukhna with Mersa Matruh on the Mediterranean. The German company Siemens won this contract amounting to 3.7 billion euros.

It is a new pharaonic site for Egypt. The country has already formalized the agreement with a consortium led by Siemens to design and manufacture a high-speed line that crosses the country from north to south. Contract amount: 3.75 billion euros for a global project that is supposed to cost 7.5 billion euros in the country.

With a length of 660 kilometers, it will connect the Red Sea city of Ain Sukhna (south of the Suez Canal) with Marsa Matrouh, a city on the Mediterranean coast located 120 kilometers west of Alexandria via 21 stations.

High-speed line in Egypt
High Speed ​​Line in Egypt © DR

It will also connect the new capital under construction (located 45 kilometers from Cairo) with other major cities in the country and will transport passengers and goods. For the country, it is a matter of erecting a “Suez Canal on rails” which will reduce road and rail congestion.

Bypassing the Suez Canal

The goal is to transport at least 30 million passengers annually at an average speed of 200 km/h in complete safety (fatal train accidents are frequent in the country). On the cargo front, the line will ease congestion in the highly congested Suez Canal by bypassing it.

Concretely, the project will be implemented by the Ministry of Transport and a consortium of Egyptian (which will take care of the public works) and German companies led by the Arab Contractors, Orascom and Siemens. The latter will be responsible for designing and manufacturing 34 train sets and 15 power, communications, signaling and maintenance units for 15 years.

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Thus, Egypt will join the closed club of 21 countries in the world, with lines that allow travel at a speed greater than or equal to 220 km / h.

Mega Infrastructure Projects

Under the leadership of its President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, the country has launched several massive infrastructure projects that are a showcase for the country’s “development.” In addition to this high-speed line, a new administrative capital and a new 48-kilometre metro line in Cairo are under construction.

In 2019, the authorities had already signed a €3.8 billion contract with a consortium led by Canadian company Bombardier (now a subsidiary of Alstom) to build two monorails connecting the first, Cairo and the new capital, and the second to Giza and 6 October City, two suburbs of Cairo.

Oliver Schechbortich Journalist at BFM Business

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