Construction To Begin On $3 Billion UAE To Oman Train Network, Hafeet Rail To Transport Passengers From Abu Dhabi To Sohar In 100 Minutes

Construction will soon begin on a $3bn UAE to Oman rail network.

The Hafeet Rail line will transport up to 400 passengers at a time from Abu Dhabi in the UAE to Sohar in Oman in 100 minutes, with top speeds of up to 200kmph.

As well as transforming tourism between the two countries, business benefits will develop mining, iron and steel, agriculture and food, retail, e-commerce and petrochemical sectors.

UAE-Oman Hafeet Rail network

A freight train journey will transport more than 15,000 tonnes of cargo between the two countries.

Sheikh Theyab bin Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Chairman of the Presidential Court for Development and Fallen Heroes’ Affairs, and Chairman of Etihad Rail, witnessed the signing of a shareholder agreement between Etihad Rail, Oman Rail and Mubadala Investment Company to commence construction of the Omani-Emirati railway network project.

The agreement signing ceremony took place during the state visit of Sultan Haitham bin Tarik, Sultan of Oman, to the UAE, along with agreements to award the civil works and construction tender, and the systems and integration tender of the network, as well as the launch of the new corporate identity of Etihad Rail, Oman Rail and Mubadala Investment Company joint venture.

Formerly Oman-Etihad Rail Company, the joint venture will now be known as Hafeet Rail.

This will drive the competitiveness of the two countries at a global trade level, which will in turn enhance their economic prosperity.

An agreement was also signed to award the civil works and construction tender for the joint network to an Omani-Emirati alliance led by Trojan Construction Group (NPC) and Galfar Engineering and Contracting, aligning with joint efforts to build national capabilities and drive in-country value, which includes the involvement of the private sector in the implementation of the joint project.

The alliance will also include Tristar Engineering & Construction (TE&C) and National Infrastructure Construction Company (NICC).

In addition, another tender for the systems and integration of the railway network, was awarded to a joint venture between Siemens and HAC, ensuring the Omani-Emirati railway network’s fleet is equipped with the latest rail technologies and advancements.

The trains will be equipped with the European Train Control System (ETCS) Level 2, the most advanced system of its kind in the world, to ensure the highest levels of efficiency and safety in accordance with international standards and best practice.

As a result, the network’s advanced infrastructure will include full digital train control and tracking through GPS technology, enhancing the network’s reliability.

Etihad Rail, Oman Rail, and Mubadala Investment Company also unveiled the new corporate identity of their joint venture, which will now be known as Hafeet Rail (formerly Oman and Etihad Rail Company).

The name pays homage to Jebel Hafeet, stretching between the Sultanate of Oman and the UAE.

Jebel Hafeet holds strategic significance and historical importance for both countries, serving as a link between the two neighbours through its rugged terrain, which includes mountains, deserts, and unique limestone formations.

Rising 1,249 metres above sea level, its numerous picturesque natural landmarks have long captivated citizens and tourists alike from across the globe.

This, in turn, contributes to the diversification of the national economy and fosters sustainable development across both countries.

By offering a dependable and sustainable transportation solution, it will reduce both time and costs, while also improving the connectivity of sea and land ports to local and regional markets.

Economically, the joint network, which boasts a total investment value of $3bn, will amplify the UAE and Oman as gateways to regional markets.

The network will also pave the way for job creation, across railway operations, and creating indirect downstream opportunities throughout various sectors in both countries, fostering the development of national talent pools.

The network will drive efficiencies within the supply chain, facilitating cross-border trade, and connecting commercial ports to railways within the two countries.

A single freight train journey can transport more than 15,000 tonnes of cargo – or around 270 standard containers.

Hafeet Rail is expected to contribute to the development of various sectors in both countries, such as:

  • Mining
  • Iron and steel
  • Agriculture and food, retail
  • E-commerce
  • Petrochemicals

This is in large due to its ability to provide fast, safe, and sustainable transportation services for goods of various sizes and weight via rail.

Furthermore, the passenger rail services will serve to connect population centres, fostering social and familial cohesion while supporting the tourism sector, with travellers between the two countries enjoying an easy and smooth travel experience thanks to innovative solutions.

The passenger train can reach speeds of up to 200kmph, covering the distance between Sohar and Abu Dhabi in 100 minutes, and Sohar and Al Ain in 47 minutes.

The one train can accommodate up to 400 passengers


Arabian Business

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