The London-based law firm joins technical adviser, a consortium of Societe Nationale des Chemins de Fer (SNCF), and financial adviser National Commercial Bank (NCB) and UBS Warburg(MEED 27:2:04).

The SRO programme calls for the construction of two new railway lines. A 950-kilometre line connecting the existing railway network to Jeddah will complete the railway link between the Red Sea and the Gulf, with a further 115-kilometre connection to Jubail. A 570-kilometre line in the west will link Jeddah, Mecca, Medina and Yanbu.

The SRO plans to invite consortia to prequalify for the BOT contract on the two railway concessions in late 2004.