KSA’s Haramain train speeds toward a 2018 opening

Saudi officials and foreign visitors are seen in one of the Haramain train couches during a test-run of the mass transport system last year. (SPA file photo)
Updated 17 March 2018
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KSA’s Haramain train speeds toward a 2018 opening

MADINAH: The SR60 billion ($16 billion) high-speed Haramain train is on track to be fully operational this year, according to Minister of Transportation and Chairman of the Saudi Railway Organization Nabil Al-Amoudi.
He said that the service will be functional for the public in 2018, in conformity with all safety measures and operational readiness for high-speed transportation.
Al-Amoudi said the pilot operation has been going to plan since the end of 2017: The project’s supervisors have organized regular trips in which a large number of governmental, non-governmental and charitable bodies have participated.
The latest passengers were Madinah Gov. Prince Faisal bin Salman, Al-Amoudi and the Chairman of the Public Transport Authority (PTA) and acting Head of the Saudi Railways Organization (SRO) Rumaih bin Mohammed Al-Rumaih, onboard for a journey that left Madinah on Friday.
Prince Faisal expressed his appreciation to King Salman for his support of public transport in the Kingdom, and especially for the high-speed train. The project is part of the Kingdom’s role in serving pilgrims to the Grand Mosque in Makkah and the visitors to the Prophet’s Mosque.
Prince Faisal praised the performance of the young men and women providing services in the train stations, effectively participating in the establishment phases and implementation of the service.
Meanwhile, Al-Amoudi said that the support of Prince Faisal had made it easier to face challenges and encouraged the work team to build the Haramain station in Madinah and the related phases within the time frame of the project.
Al-Amoudi stressed the PTA’s drive to take transport in the Kingdom to another level, guaranteeing opportunities for nationalization and thus achieving the Kingdom’s Vision 2030.
He said that the Haramain train station was proof of the Kingdom’s competence in achieving such projects.
The Haramain service is one of the biggest public transport projects in the Middle East, a 450 kilometer two-way electric train linking Makkah and Madinah, with extensions to Jeddah and King Abdullah Economic City.
The project will transport 60 million passengers a year on 35 trains, with a seating capacity of 417 per train and traveling at a speed of 300 kph.
The station is about 3 km from the Grand Mosque in Makkah, while the Madinah station is located in the Knowledge Economic City on King Abdul Aziz Road.
Umrah visitors, who are expected to reach about 15 million by 2020, are eagerly waiting for the full operation of the Haramain train, which will cross the distance between the two holy cities in two hours instead of six hours by bus.
The project includes four train stations in Makkah, Jeddah, King Abdullah Economic City and Madinah, in addition to a fifth station at the new King Abdul Aziz Airport.


King Salman to inaugurate key mining, industrial projects

Updated 13 November 2018
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King Salman to inaugurate key mining, industrial projects

  • The king will visit Waad Al-Shamal City for Mining Industries in the northern borders to inaugurate a number of mining and industrial projects
  • The Saudi Cabinet noted the visit by King Salman to Qassim and Hail, attending citizens’ celebrations as well as his inauguration of a number of development projects

JEDDAH: King Salman will visit the northern regions of the Kingdom next week to inaugurate a number of development projects.
The king will also visit Waad Al-Shamal City for Mining Industries in the northern borders to inaugurate a number of mining and industrial projects, the Royal Court said in a statement on Tuesday.
Also on Tuesday, Saudi Shoura Council Speaker Sheikh Abdullah Al Al-Asheikh announced that the king will inaugurate the activities of the third year of the seventh session of the Shoura Council next Monday. The king will deliver a speech on Saudi Arabia’s internal and external policy.
The Saudi Cabinet on Tuesday also noted the visit by King Salman to the two regions of Qassim and Hail, attending citizens’ celebrations as well as his inauguration and laying the cornerstone of a number of development projects.
This reflects the king’s directives to provide services for all citizens and regions in the Kingdom for the achievement of further growth and development.
The Cabinet also commended the king’s directive to release prisoners and the insolvent in the regions of Qassim and Hail and pay their debts, considering it an extension of his care for insolvent and limited-income citizens.
The Cabinet reviewed the Kingdom’s support for the Palestinian cause, pointing to the Saudi Fund for Development (SFD)’s transfer of the Kingdom’s financial contribution to support the Palestinian Authority’s budget for August, September and October 2018, including an additional contribution totaling $60 million.
The Cabinet reiterated Saudi Arabia’s strong condemnation and denunciation of the bombing that took place in Mosul, northern Iraq; the suicide attacks in the Iraqi capital of Mogadishu and the Afghani capital of Kabul; and the attack in the city of Melbourne, Australia, confirming the Kingdom’s rejection of violence, terrorism and extremism, offering condolences to the families of the dead and wishing the injured a speedy recovery.
The Cabinet reviewed a number of scientific and cultural activities, stressing that the patronage of King Salman of the honoring ceremony of winners of the eighth King Khalid Award is considered an expression of his support for the prize to achieve its humanitarian, social and developmental goals.