France’s Alstom, Spain’s Ferrovial and Algeria’s Enterprise Metro d’Alger (EMA) and Societe Nationale des Transports Ferroviaires (SNTF) have agreed to expand the scope of their joint venture company Cital. 

The joint venture company’s initial activities include the assembly and maintenance of Alstom’s Citadis trams for the Algerian market.

The new agreement now includes the assembly and maintenance of regional and intercity trains, particularly the Coradia. It also marks the entry of SNTF into the joint venture.

SNTF, Alstom cited, intends to order 98 Coradia trains from Cital as part of the operator’s plans to extend its rail network from 3,000 kilometres to 12,500 kilometres by 2025 and to own a larger fleet of train that could travel on various types of rail lines.

The original joint venture was created in 2011 and established a 46,000 square metre assembly facility in Annaba that currently employs more than 200 staff. The facility had a capacity to assemble five trams per month.

The new agreement aims to expand the facility’s footprint to 190,000 square metres. Alstom said the new facility will include an engineering department, new production lines and a maintenance depot. It will also have the capacity to produce one Coradia train each month.

Alstom expects the expanded facility to create an estimated 270 direct jobs, and hundreds more in indirect employment.