Saudi rail contract cancelled

16 July 2015

Cancellation of $200m deal for rolling stock supply casts doubt onto scheme

  • SRO has offered no explanation for the cancellation of Talgo deal
  • Talgo shares lost 12 per cent in daily trading

Spanish rolling stock supplier Talgo announced on 15 July that the $200m contract it signed in February with Saudi Railways Organisation (SRO) for the supply of six high-speed trains for use in the 480-kilometre-long rail link connecting Riyadh and Dammam has been cancelled.

SRO apparently has not offered a reason for the cancellation, which resulted in a 12 per cent loss to the Spanish firm’s shares yesteday, according to reports in the local and international press.

MEED had earlier reported that the contract entails the supply of new diesel-electric traction trains to help cut the travelling time between Riyadh and Dammam to three hours down from four, with design speeds of 200 kilometres an hour (km/h).

Talgo is part of the largely Spanish consortium led by the local Al-Shoula Group that signed the $7.9bn contract for phase two of the Haramain High Speed Rail Network, which will link the cities of Medina, Jeddah and Mecca. It will be 450km long, with five stations (Central Jeddah, King Abdulaziz International airport in Jeddah, Mecca, Medina and King Abdullah Economic City in Rabigh) along its route.

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