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Trade Arabia, Saturday, Mar 19, 2022 | Sha'ban 16, 1443

Saudi railway forum offers $266.3m project opportunities

Saudi Railway Company has announced that its key railway industrial forum being held in capital Riyadh, is offering first pack of economic and industrial opportunities worth more than SR1 billion ($266.3 million) to both local and international firms.

The forum witnessed offering industrial opportunities in the railway sector, the top of which are manufacturing train cars, train wheels, engine spare parts and towing engines, and railways, reported SPA.

The event was inaugurated by Minister of Transport and Logistic Services and SAR Chairman Engineer Saleh bin Nasser Al Jasser today (March 17) under strategic patronage of the National Industrial Development and Logistics Program (NIDLP).

The minister said that the forum’s launch of the first pack of the economic and industrial opportunities will provide a qualitative advantage and added value not only for the transport sector, but also for supportive sectors that complement the railway industry.

"The forum seeks to expand partnership opportunities between the public and private sectors and develop the railway infrastructure according to the railway plans over the next period, which aims at opening the market for new operators and increasing the participation of the private sector in shipping operations and trips for transporting passengers and assets," he noted.

Al Jasser pointed out that the forum is being held after one year of completing operations of restructuring the railway sector in Saudi Arabia under SAR’s umbrella in a phase that the transport and logistic services system realizes several and diversified achievements in various sectors of the system.

The minister also stressed that the expansion plan of the railway over the next years seeks to increase the lengths of railways with over additional 8,000 km to realize local and regional connection in a way that doubles the capabilities of transport through passenger and cargo trains and adopt modern technologies and advanced technological solutions that contribute to reducing the environmental impact of transport through trains, increasing the competitiveness of Saudi products and boosting the efficiency of supply chains.

SAR– with its cumulative expertise and big capabilities through its three grids spanning over lengths exceeding 5,500 km (North Train, East Train and Haramain High Speed Rail) – managed to carry more than 33 million passengers and over 70 million tonnes of minerals and goods over the past 10 years, which means shifting more than six million trips on trucks, which reflected on reducing the number of accidents on roads and reducing the number of deaths by over 50% during the past five years, said the SPA report.

CEO Dr Bashar Al Malik said these industrial opportunities are a result of meeting local needs based on studies conducted by SAR in a way that matches its strategic goals and several important programmes of the Saudi Vision 2030, such as NIDLP, Doyof Al Rahman Program (DARP), and Quality of Life Program, among others.

Highlighting the company’s willingness to overcome all challenges in partnership with all government sectors and take necessary decision towards localizing the railway industry, Al Malik called upon the private sector to use these investment opportunities and become main partners in a vital and promising sector.

Localizing the railway industry is no longer an option rather than a strategic goal that we seek to realize with determination, he added.

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