The Yuan 330m ($US 53.5m) contract was signed during this week's state visit of the French president Mr François Hollande to China by representatives of the municipality of Shenyang, Mr Pierre Mongin, CEO of RATP, and Jean-Marc Janaillac, CEO of Transdev Group. The operating company will be 51% owned by the municipality with Transdev and RATP Dev holding the remaining 49% stake.

CNR Changchun is supplying a fleet of low-floor LRVs for the four-line network, which are equipped with Voith supercapacitor energy storage units for catenary-free operation. So far 30 vehicles have been ordered and the fleet will be maintained at two depots.

Construction began on the Yuan 4.86bn project in February 2012, and the network is expected to carry around 150,000 passengers per day. The system will be completed in time for the 12th National Games of the People's Republic of China, which will be hosted by Shenyang in August and September.

The contract is the fifth joint venture between RATP Dev and Transdev in Asia, following the Hong Kong tram network, bus networks in Nanjing and Macau, and Seoul Metro Line 9.