The first air-conditioned subway train has come into operation on Cairo's oldest metro line, part of a plan to bring some 20 such trains into action in the capital.
In a city where summer often gets swelteringly hot, conditions can become really harsh for some 3.5 million daily passengers in the often crowded cars.
The new train – which ran early Thursday in the first of Cairo's three lines – was launched to make transportation easier for Egyptians during the fasting Islamic month of Ramadan which began today, the spokesman of the metro operation company, Ahmed Abdel-Hady, told Ahram Online.
It travelled on the Helwan-Marg line.
The second air-conditioned train is also due to come into service during the holy month.
Cairo's newest metro line already has air-conditioned carriages.
The new addition comes as part of a LE2.2 billion ($301.4 million) deal with a Korean firm to bring 20 air-conditioned trains into service, in a plan that is expected to take years.
Officials say a train arrives in Egypt from Korea every 45 days and testing of each takes about two months before it becomes operational.
Another Spanish firm hired by the Egyptian Co. for Metro Management and Operation (ECMMO) is currently conducting studies to air condition 53 trains already in operation in the first, partly above-ground line.