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Sunday, 7 March 2021

Big train a-comin’

The safety and quality of service of Egypt’s railways are getting an upgrade with a USD 440 mn loan from the World Bank, which reached an agreement with the International Cooperation Ministry to allocate the funding for the Railway Improvement and Safety for Egypt (RISE) project, according to a press release (pdf).

In details: The RISE project is valued at a total USD 681.1 mn, which includes the World Bank’s loan and another USD 241.1 mn the Egyptian National Railways (ENR) will contribute. The World Bank’s financing will help finance signaling modernization and rail track upgrades, with a focus on the Cairo-Beni Suef segment of the rail network. The project will also buttress “reforms needed to enhance ENR’s performance and competitiveness,” the statement said. RISE will “support the momentum for reform and the demand for urban mobility and reliable public transport, integral to achieving the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals,” Minister Rania Al-Mashat said.

Speaking of railways: Phase 1 of Cairo’s USD 4.5 bn mega-monorail project — which runs 45 km to connect East Cairo to the new administrative capital — is slated for inauguration by the end of May 2022, Transport Minister Kamel El Wazir said at a site tour yesterday. Meanwhile, the second and final phase of the project (extending over 11.5 km) is scheduled to open in February 2023, El Wazir said.

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