Etihad Rail, the UAE’s national railways connecting the entire country and the GCC region, on Tuesday announced that it is tripling its wagon fleet to over 1,000 units.
The contract to manufacture, supply and commission 842 new wagons was awarded to China’s CRRC Corporation during a virtual ceremony attended by Sheikh Theyab bin Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Member of the Abu Dhabi Executive Council, Chairman of the Abu Dhabi Crown Prince’s Court and Chairman of Etihad Rail, and Sun Yongcai, president of CRRC Corporation.
The contract signing was conducted by Shadi Malak, CEO of Etihad Rail, and Wang Hongwei, vice-president of CRRC Yangtze Group, a subsidiary of CRRC Corp.
Sheikh Theyab reviewed the overall construction work progress of Stage Two also and witnessed the purchase approval of wagons which will increase the rail’s annual transport capacity to 59 million tonnes.
In January 2020, Etihad Rail launched the construction works of Package A of Stage Two of the project, which will run for 139km from Guweifat on the UAE border with Saudi Arabia to Ruwais. With this award, Etihad Rail has completed the contract-awarding process of Stage Two of the national network.
When completed, Stage Two of the network will extend 605 kilometres from Ghuweifat on the border with Saudi Arabia to Fujairah and Khorfakkan on the UAE’s east coast, while connecting the ports of Jebel Ali in Dubai, Khalifa Port in Abu Dhabi, ICAD/Mussafah in Abu Dhabi and the Port of Fujairah, with the existing Stage One line at Ruwais.
“The national railway network is designed to cater to the needs of customers and related industrial sectors, as well as existing multi-modal transport systems. Etihad Rail, the operator of a new, modern, scalable, and reliable mode of transport, will directly support the vision of the UAE’s wise leadership for economic growth and sustainable transportation,” said Sheikh Theyab.
By tripling its wagons fleet, Etihad Rail can transport containerised and bulk freight, including petrochemicals, aggregates, construction-related materials, industrial and perishable goods, waste, cement and all related construction materials, aluminium, perishable goods, as well as general cargo, both domestically and internationally.