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The high-speed train in Egypt.. Will the hoped-for economic development happen?

The high-speed train in Egypt.. Will the hoped-for economic development happen?
The high-speed train in Egypt.. Will the hoped-for economic development happen?

According to a statement by the Egyptian Ministry of Transport; The fast electric train track connects the city of Ain Sukhna and extends east of the Nile to Helwan Station, passing through the Administrative Capital, and continues west of the Nile from the South Giza Station to be integrated with the Upper Egypt Railways to reach the October area to serve the residents of October Gardens and 6 October and to integrate with the second line of the train Expressway (October – Aswan) and the 6th of October monorail, which is being implemented.

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Prof. Dr. Hisham Arafat, the former Minister of Transport and Executive Director of the Board of Trustees of the Future University, says that the study of the high-speed electric train project began in 2017, when he was the Minister of Transport, pointing out that it is a fast train and not a high-speed train; Because the area of ​​Egypt does not need a high-speed train.

In exclusive statements to Sky News Arabia, Arafat described the project as the “Iron Canal” – an analogy to the Egyptian Suez Canal – as it is considered a strategic transport line linking the Red Sea with the Mediterranean, stressing that the project will contribute to a comprehensive development in Egypt, in addition to To a paradigm shift in the transportation of goods.

He continued, “This strategic line also links the economic zone of the Suez Canal with Bahrain, which contributes to the process of transporting goods through it instead of using land roads, and to relieve pressure on the road network.”

He indicated that to maintain the road network; Despite the great improvement that the Egyptian citizen noticed on these roads; Multiple means of transportation must be resorted to, specifically in the transport of goods, adding: “The project aims to transport 8 million tons of goods by 2024, up to 22 million tons of goods in 2040.”

New line specification

Regarding reducing the risk of continuous accidents, he pointed out that the railway system is not that bad as a result of its deterioration, lack of maintenance, or the like. But due to the urban attack on the railway line, adding: “The railway line in the old time was separate and far from the city; but now you may find that there is a railway that divides the city in half due to random construction during the last fifty and sixty years.”

About the new line and its specifications; “It will be elevated from the ground, it will be completely separated from residential buildings, and all the lanes in it will become bridges and not slides,” he added, indicating that the line would enhance the state’s integrated transportation plan.

As for the comprehensive development that it will bring, he stressed that, first, it will enhance the transport of goods, which will help increase the volume of demand for new cities, and most importantly increase the volume of demand for transporting passengers and goods in the Suez Canal Economic Zone, in addition to developing the tourism movement in areas such as El Alamein, Ain Sukhna, and the North Coast.

Anticipating the Egyptian state for implementation

In this context, Dr. Hassan Mahdi, a professor of road engineering at Ain Shams University and a transport expert, said that the work of implementing the infrastructure for the first phase of the electric high-speed train is currently in the process of being implemented from the beginning of this year 2021.

He added in statements to “Sky News Arabia” that the Egyptian state did not wait to sign the contract today with Siemens to start civil works, such as forming the bridge on which the train will run, in addition to bridges and tunnels, which is what national Egyptian companies are doing.

He pointed out that the signing of the contract today targets the operation and supply of mobile units and the electronic signal system, which will be implemented by a coalition of Arab Contractors, Orascom, and Siemens, after the completion of the train infrastructure.

He stressed that the Egyptian government anticipated this step by starting to implement the infrastructure represented by the Egyptian Ministry of Transport, explaining that Siemens’ role will begin after the end of the infrastructure by supplying the signaling system that controls the movement of trains, as well as implementing the flanges, and from the German side will supply electric traction units. .

The role of the train in the Egyptian economy

As for his role in the Egyptian economy; He stressed that it will have a tangible role and technical and economic feasibility, and help encourage urban sprawl, explaining that any uninhabited area is a major reason for its migration is the lack of transportation and transportation.

He continued, “The presence of a fast electric train that transports passengers and goods and passes through uninhabited areas will be considered a lifeline for development, through the establishment of development communities and industrial zones, and disturbing population densities and moving to a larger area instead of focusing on 6% of the total area of ​​Egypt.”

With regard to lightening the burden on land roads; He stressed that the train will make a qualitative leap in transporting goods and relieve pressure on land transport, because transporting goods depends by 99% on land roads because there are no other transport tools.

On the end of the bridge for the express train; He stressed that it is expected to be completed within two years, i.e. the beginning of 2023, especially in light of the state’s interest in the fast electric train, to reduce the loads on land roads.

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