May 11, 2016

EBRD to finance Cairo tram revival

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The Heliopolis tram network prior to closure. The Heliopolis tram network prior to closure.

THE European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Egypt's Ministry of International Cooperation on financing for the reconstruction of the Cairo - Heliopolis tram network.

The metre-gauge system ran northeast from Ramses Square in Cairo, where it split into three branches. For decades the network suffered from under-investment with the deteriorating condition of infrastructure and rolling stock finally forcing closure in 2014.

Under the MoU, the EBRD would provide a total of $US 250m in two packages to help finance the $US 500m reconstruction project. A sovereign loan of up to $US 125m would finance infrastructure works, which would be implemented by Egypt's National Authority for Tunnels. The second loan, also worth up to $US 125m, would go to a private company for the procurement of rolling stock and operation and maintenance of the fleet.

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