On the same day, GE also inaugurated its new $US 35m purpose-built Roza maintenance depot in the Shahjahanpur district of Uttar Pradesh.

GE was awarded a $US 2.5bn contract in November 2015 to supply 700 3.36MW ES43ACmi locomotives (designated WDG4G by IR) and 300 4.47MW ES57ACi units over an 11-year period through a joint venture with IR. The more powerful variant is currently at the design stage and production is due to begin later this year.

The first 40 locomotives are being built at GE’s plant in Erie, Pennsylvania, while the remaining 960 units will be assembled at a new joint venture production facility at Marhoura in the Indian state of Bihar. Localisation will ultimately be stepped up to 70% of the value of each locomotive.

"Our strong partnership with Indian Railways is aligned to Government of India’s railway modernisation and “Make in India” efforts,” says GE Transportation’s international president and CEO Mr Nalin Jain. “The timely delivery of the first two locomotives and the unveiling of the Roza maintenance shed have been made possible owing to strong commitment from the GE team in India and globally, working closely with IR.”