CAIRO: A new batch of Russian passenger trains arrived at the Alexandria port on Saturday as part of a deal to manufacture and supply 1,300 new railroad cars.
The deal, which Egyptian Minister of Transport Kamel Al-Wazir has said is the largest deal in the history of Egyptian railways, was signed by the Egyptian Railways Authority and the Russian company Transmash, representing the Russian-Hungarian alliance, and is worth €1.16 billion ($1.4 billion).
The minister said that the 22 carriages that arrived are Class-III compartments with dynamic ventilation, bringing the total number of Russian cars that have arrived so far to 208.
The rest of the vehicles will arrive in batches according to the specified schedule.
Al-Wazir said that the development in the railway system in Egypt comes as a result of the great interest that Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi has taken in the development of the transport sector, including the railway sector, and the initiative to provide the means necessary to upgrade it according to the latest global technological systems.
He pointed out that the deal contributes to increasing the efficiency of daily operations and the regularity of operating schedules, especially as it coincides with projects to modernize the infrastructure currently under implementation, such as the improvement of signaling systems, the renewal of bars, and the development of stations and workshops.
All these procedures and projects that the ministry is implementing have contributed to improving safety, as well as the quality of service provided to passengers.
The deal for the 1,300 new passenger trains includes 800 air-conditioned railway cars and 500 third-class air-conditioned railway cars, which is a new service that is being offered to passengers for the first time in the history of Egyptian railways. The deal also includes 180 second-class cars, 90 first-class cars, 30 air-conditioned buffet cars and 500 dynamic third-class cars.