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Etihad Rail has signed a joint venture (JV) deal with DB Schenker Rail, a unit of Germany’s Deutsche Bahn, to operate and maintain the UAE’s US$11bn rail network
Upon completion, the national railway network will span about 1,200km as part of the planned Gulf railway network, reports said.
The JV Etihad Rail DB will manage operations for the first stage of the railway, transporting granulated sulphur on a 264km route from Shah and Habshan to the Port of Ruwais, according to Etihad Rail.
The second stage, extending 628km will connect Mussafah Port to Khalifa Port and Jebel Ali Port and the third stage will span 279km and connect the rest of the northern Emirates, added the company.
Mattar al-Tayer, chairman of Etihad Rail DB, said, ”The company will pave the way for the railway operations in the UAE and set a benchmark in the region.”
Rüdiger Grube, CEO of Deutsche Bahn, added that the Etihad Rail network heralded a new era in transport — one that DB Schenker Rail is proud to be a part of.
“We are confident in the vital role it will play in strength ening the UAE’s strategic position. Our experts of DB Schenker Rail and DB International are very much looking forward to working with Etihad Rail.”
According to Reuters, Arab oil exporters are spending billions of dollars on projects in power and transport, as they want to boost regional trade.