A batch of 22 new rail carriages arrived at the Port of Alexandria as part of a deal with the Russian Transmashholding company to import 1,300 railcars to Egypt, Egyptian Minister of Transportation Kamel El-Wazir said on Tuesday.
The agreement between the Russian company and the Egyptian National Railways, worth more than 1 billion euros, is the largest in the history of the Egyptian railway sector.
To date, 173 rail carriages included in the deal have arrived in Egypt.
The 22 new rail carriages are aerodynamically ventilated third-class cars, El-Wazir said, adding that the upcoming batches would be delivered on a monthly basis in accordance with the timeline set under the deal.
He noted that the batches also include new locomotives.
El-Wazir said that the deal includes 800 air-conditioned rail carriages and 500 third-class carriages with a dynamic ventilation system.
The 800 rail carriages include third-class cars, 180 luxury second-class cars, 90 luxury first-class cars, and 30 buffet cars.
Egypt’s railway network is among the world’s oldest, with 9,570 km of tracks running across the country.
It transports 500 million passengers annually, an average of 1.4 million passengers each day, according to the Egyptian National Railways (ENR).
El-Wazir believes the new coaches will contribute to raising the efficiency of daily operations and the regularity of operating schedules, as well as achieve a huge qualitative shift in the level of services provided to passengers, according to an earlier statement by the ministry.
The ministry is also working on ventures to modernise the railway’s signalling systems over 1,800km at a total cost of EGP 46.8 billion.