Egypt’s Minister of Transport Kamel Al-Wazir (Photo: AL-Ahram)
Egypt’s Minister of Transport Kamel Al-Wazir has said that Cairo is currently working on establishing a new railway line linking Egypt to Sudan, to act as a platform for the export of Egyptian products to Sudan, Central Africa and the rest of the African continent.
“The 600-kilometer railway from Abu Simbel in Egypt’s south will link Aswan with the Sudanese town of Abu Hamad and also aims to transfer raw material from Africa to Egypt,” the Egyptian minister said in press statements earlier this week.
Earlier this year, the deputy chairman of the Egyptian Railways Authority Magdy El-Sabbagh said that Egyptian-Sudanese railway linkage negotiations were in progress, adding that the project may see momentum during the coming period given Egypt’s presidency of the African Union this year.
El-Sabbagh said that the two countries had agreed to conduct new studies to scan the line and determine its requirements, at an initial cost of $500 million.
He added that solutions are being proposed to overcome the problem of the different railway widths between the two countries, since the railway line in Sudan is narrower than in Egypt.
The connecting line was first proposed in 2010 and was revived in mid-2018 after an Egyptian transport delegation visited Khartoum.
Following the visit, a high-level transport coordination committee between Egypt and Sudan was formed to follow up on the implementation of the line, the construction of which is set to take up to 36 months.
Egypt and Sudan had established a joint railway committee in 2008 in to promote railway connections between the two countries.