Oman and Saudi Arabia may construct a railway connection between Duqm and Riyadh.
The project is currently under study. If constructed, the line will stretch from the southeastern coast of Oman, 550 kilometres from the capital Muscat, through the city of Ibri in the northwest of the sultanate and then on to Saudi Arabia’s capital, according to a senior official at Oman’s Ministry of Transport, Communications & Information Technology (MTCIT).
“The establishment of such a railway line will be useful for transporting goods and stimulating commercial movement, not passenger transport,” said the MTCIT undersecretary for transport, Khamis bin Mohammed al-Shamakhi.
Regional railway projects are enjoying a boost in the region.
The UAE has recently completed the 900km national rail network connecting Ghuwaifat in the west, on Saudi Arabia’s border, to Fujairah in the east. Freight operations have started.
The UAE-Oman rail network, connecting Abu Dhabi to Sohar through Al-Ain, recently got a push after the Abu Dhabi-based Mubadala Investment Company signed an agreement with Oman-Etihad Rail Company to support the development of the 303km network.
Oman-Etihad Rail, the joint venture in charge of developing and operating the UAE-Oman rail network, is expected to invite local and international contractors to submit an expression of interest (EoI) letter for the UAE-Oman railway in the first half of the year.
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