ORASCOM and The Arab Contractors have signed a contract with NGE, France, for its subsidiary TSO to build 330km of high-speed railway in Egypt.

The double-track line will run from Ain Al Sokhna, near Alexandria, via October 6 City on the outskirts of Cairo to Borg El Arab. The line will have more than 100 turnouts.

Egypt’s National Authority for Tunnels (NAT) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) in January 2021 with Siemens Mobility, Orascom Construction and The Arab Contractors to design, build, equip and commission Egypt’s first high-speed line. The 460km phase one will connect El-Alamein on the Mediterranean Sea to Ain Sokhna on the Red Sea, via the New Administrative Capital. A 200km phase two will extend the line from El Alamein to Marsa Matrouh.

The line, which will have a design speed of 250km/h, will carry both freight and passenger services, with express trains operating at 200km/h, regional trains running at 160km/h and freight trains at 120km/h. The line will have 20 stations.

NGE says it won the contract through its capacity to implement planning adapted to the client’s objectives, as well as its experience with high-speed project management. It says that work will start “in early 2023” and will require the mobilisation of up to 500 people on-site.

“We are proud to make a significant contribution to this project, which will provide nearly 90% of the Egyptian population with access to fast and reliable public transport,” says COO international and major projects at NGE, Mr Orso Vesperini. “It will also make a significant contribution to sustainability by shifting freight traffic to rail and stimulating Egypt’s economic development.”

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