Etihad Rail Project
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Etihad Rail, the developer and operator of the UAE’s national railway network, will be the first national freight and passenger railway network connecting the seven emirates of the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
The 1,200km railway project is estimated to cost AED40bn ($11bn). The railway infrastructure will become a vital part of the $100bn Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) rail programme. The GCC railway network will connect the UAE with Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Kuwait, Bahrain and Oman and is expected to be ready by 2018.
UAE has good ground road transportation infrastructure and the seven emirates are connected through highways.
The new railway project is expected to be a sustainable and efficient alternative for transportation of freight and passengers throughout urban and rural areas of the Emirate. It is expected to serve about 16 million passengers and 50 million tons of freight. The railway infrastructure will significantly contribute to the reduction of roadway emissions. The railway connectivity will promote trade and social development in the Emirate and across the GCC countries.
The Etihad Rail stretches westwards to the borders of Qatar and Saudi Arabia. The western section links Saudi Arabia via Ghweifat and the eastern section links Oman via Al Ain. The railway line runs across the Emirate connecting Abu Dhabi, Sharjah and Dubai. It then extends to the northern emirates and Fujairah. The UAE railway will connect with the sources of raw materials, industrial areas, ports and major population centers.