Line 6 will run from Sadeghi Square to Azadegan Highway, while line 7, will run from Velenjak, through Shahrak-e Qods to Afsareh.

Both contractors have been asked to bring finance, something that could prove difficult given the reluctance of Western and Japanese banks to take on Iranian project debt. The projects will also demand a high level of technical procurement, much of it from abroad, including rolling stock manufacturing, switching and communications systems.

Ghorb has also been awarded the estimated $350 million civils package on line 4. The package was originally to have been carried out by China North Industries Corporation (Norinco), but because of rising procurement prices, Norinco’s original bid of $680 million for the entire project is no longer feasible. As a result, the project has been split into two packages, with the Chinese company now responsible for carrying out the procurement and equipment supply only.