UAE’s Dh40 billion Rail Network on Track

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Richard Bowker, CEO of Union Railways, has confirmed that the the construction of the UAE rail network could cost up to Dh40 billion and that the first contract for the 1,500km long passenger and freight rail network could be awarded by the end of 2010. The project for the UAE rail network is expected to take 7 years to complete.

The UAE rail network will extend from Abu Dhabi’s Western region through Dubai, Sharjah, Umm Al Quwain, Fujairah, Ras Al Khaimah and Ajman. Plans are also being considered to build a high-speed passenger rail between Abu Dhabi and Dubai.

The first phase of the project is expected to include the 270km rail line specifically for freight linking Abu Dhabi’s Shah sour gas field to Ruwais.

The entire project could cost in the region of Dh30-40 billion although the CEO did comment that they are not making “any sort of final determination because things are still being developed and determined.”

CEO Richard Bowker went on to say that “We have still not made any final decision on the financing strategy. It is a government company and it is being led by the government, but the final decision on exactly how to structure it will be made in due course. Our focus at the moment is just to ensure that the railway plans are well developed.”

The planning is very well advanced although a number of factors are still being taken into account. The focus is currently on the Shah Ruwais line. The yellow lines are inside Abu Dhabi. The alignment is clearly defined because of the project background and Union Railways are now working very hard in partnership with all other Emirates to make the rest of the network as well defined.

Category: Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Sharjah

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