Qatar’s plans to build long-distance freight and high-speed passenger rail lines are gaining momentum after Qatar Rail issued request for proposals (RFP) for both projects.

The RFP covers consultancy services, including detailed design, civil infrastructure and mechanical, electrical and plumbing (MEP) works.

The RFP was issued on 25 December, with tender clarifications due by 24 January and proposals due in by 24 February.

Early plans for the two rail lines see the project broken down into three phases. The first phase will involve a 195-kilometre freight line linking Port Mesaieed to Ras Laffan, and eventually linking into Saudi Arabia through the planned GCC-wide network.

Phase two involves the construction of the 150km high-speed connection linking into Bahrain. Phase three will see the construction of 165km passenger and freight national network linking Dukhan to Al-Shamal and Doha City.

The release of the RFP closely follows the submission of bids for the tunnelling works and stations packages for the Doha metro. Qatar Rail is expected to award contracts for this project in the second quarter of this year.