The Egyptian Minister of Transport Kamel El-Wazir with his Sudanese counterpart acting Minister Hisham Abu-Zaid during their meeting on Tuesday 22 February, 2022. Photo courtesy of Egyptian Ministry of Transportation Facebook page.
The first stage of the railway links Aswan to Abu Simbel in southern Egypt, at a length of 285 kilometres, and the second stage, which will reach Wadi Halfa in northern Sudan, is set to be 80 kilometres long.
Egyptian Minister of Transport Kamel El-Wazir met on Tuesday with Hisham Abu-Zaid, Sudan’s acting transportation minister, to discuss the efforts of the two neighbours to cooperate in the transport sector.
El-Wazir stressed in the meeting the strength of the historical relations between the two brotherly countries, saying that the Egyptian transport ministry mobilises all of its potential to coordinate and cooperate with the Sudanese brothers in all transport sectors.
The new railway line between the two countries was first proposed in 2010 and was revived in 2018 to act as a platform for the export of Egyptian products to Sudan, Central Africa and the rest of the African continent.
Following the visit, a high-level transport coordination committee between Egypt and Sudan was formed to follow up on the building of the railway.
Egypt and Sudan established a joint railway committee in 2008 to promote railway connections between the two countries.
The two sides discussed on Tuesday the latest developments in constructing an interconnected station in Sudan, where the Egyptian National Railways Authority (NRA) has prepared a model showcasing how passengers and goods will be transported.
The two sides also reviewed a new contract for the maintenance and repair of four Sudanese railway locomotives, as per a request from the Sudanese side.
In the maritime field, the Sudanese expressed interest in cooperating with the Egyptian side in construction and maintenance works.
Concerning seaports, the Egyptian transport minister stressed that all the capabilities of Egypt’s ports and the maritime transport sector are ready to serve the Sudanese brothers.
The two sides also reviewed the proposed timetable for implementing the development work of the Nile Valley Authority for River Navigation and implementing urgent plans to develop the authority, rehabilitate the current river units, rehabilitate workers and support the authority with specialised technical cadres, with emphasis on fast-tracking the Wadi Halfa berth and the Aswan-Wadi Halfa shipping line.
They discussed the necessity of establishing two logistics zones in the ports of Qastal and Arqin on the Egyptian-Sudanese border to achieve a major qualitative leap in the movement of trade between the two sides.