Egyptian National Railways (ENR) is stil locked in negotiations with three parties interested in financing the contract for the supply of 50 to 100 locomotives, which it requires as part of the country’s rail modernisation programme.

The companies are understood to include the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), the US’ GE, and Germany’s Siemens.

“EBRD seems to offer the best terms [of the three],” a source familiar with the transaction tells MEED.

The current negotiations are understood to focus on the first 50 locomotives, with the rest likely to be procured at a later stage.

Once a loan agreement is reached with the chosen company, a consultant will be appointed to prepare the tender documents before an international bidding process is conducted.

“The tender is expected to be ready before the end of the first quarter of 2017,” MEED has been told.

The rail agency is also currently reviewing offers for a separate contract for the supply of 700 non-air-conditioned coaches.

It is understood that Russia’s Transhmasholding and Hungary’s Ganz Motor and Dunakeszi have formed a joint venture and submitted a technical and financial offer for the contract. They are bidding against a Latvian company who also offered to finance the project.