Egypt is set to embark on a $255 million electric train project that will run to the country's planned new administrative capital, which officials say will save millions of dollars in fuel subsidies and reduce traffic, state news agency MENA reported.
The construction of the railway, which will connect the Cairo suburb Al-Salam City with the new metropolis east of Cairo, is set to start in two or three months, head of the National Authority for Tunnels (NAT) Tarek Gamal Al-Din said on Tuesday.
The railway, which will cover 68km and will mostly be above ground, will run through the northeastern Cairo suburbs of Badr and Al-Shorouk, Gamal A-Din told a press conference at the cabinet headquarters.
The train will be able to accomodate 340,000 passengers daily.
The project will be financed through a loan from China to be paid back over 20 years.
After it is complete, the project is expected to save the state EGP 2.3 billion (approx. $130 million) in fuel subsidies and vehicle traffic. It will also cut traffic by 30 percent on a highway connecting the capital to the the Suez canal at Ismailia port city, northeast of Cairo.
Egypt announced early in 2015 its ambitious plan to construct a new metropolis 45km east of Cairo as part of the government's efforts to draw back foreign investors scared away by years of political turmoil following the 2011 popular revolt.