The Saudi Railway Company (SAR) has extended the deadline for the submission of expressions of interest (EOI) for a contract on the North-South rail line.

The contract covers infrastructure management, rail operations and rolling stock maintenance. The deadline has been extended to 20 October, having previously been set for 9 October.

Companies that submit EOIs will be eligible to receive a request for proposal.

The 2,750-kilometre North-South rail line features the Mineral Route, which links the phosphate and bauxite mines in the north of the country to the processing and export facilities at Ras al-Khair, Jubail and Dammam.

It also includes the passenger and freight network that connects Riyadh to Al-Haditha on the Jordanian border, as well as the Jubail Industrial city internal rail network.

In September, SAR invited local and international contractors to prequalify on two other rail projects.

One scheme covers the civil and track works for the 212km Waad al-Shamal line. This rail link will serve the $7bn phosphates city being built by Saudi Arabian Mining Company (Maaden).

The second project covers the provision of signalling and telecoms works on sections of the North-South line, including the 115km Jubail-Dammam link, the Jubail internal network, and the Waad al-Shamal railway.