GE Transportation has signed two contracts with Kazakhstan’s state-run railroad Kazakhstan Temir Zholy (KTZ), which have a combined value of more than $900m.

The deals cover the delivery of 300 shunter locomotives, as well as an 18-year service agreement to provide maintenance services for 175 passenger Evolution Series trains.

The first two shunter units are expected to be delivered in 2019, while the remaining 298 vehicles will be provided over the next 10 years.

Shunter locomotives are commonly used in rail yards to assemble trains and conduct short-haul journeys.

"The agreements signed during President Nazarbayev’s visit to the US are aimed at further modernising our rail fleet and will expand the range of locomotives made in Kazakhstan."

The new agreements build on the long association between GE Transportation and KTZ.

GE previously supplied more than 400 modernisation kits to KTZ in 1995 in order to extend the revenue-generating life of the rail operator’s fleet by up to 20 years.

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By GlobalData

Both parties also collaborated on the construction of an Evolution Locomotive Assembly plant in Astana in 2006.

They also entered a long-term service deals in 2009 and 2011 to modernise the Evolution fleet and various rail infrastructure.

KTZ chairman Kanat Alpysbayev said: “The agreements signed during President Nazarbayev’s visit to the US are aimed at further modernising our rail fleet and will expand the range of locomotives made in Kazakhstan to better meet the needs of the domestic market, as well as countries in the broader CIS and Baltic region.

“In addition, we are currently working on a number of projects under our Digital Railway Program, including deploying GE’s Trip Optimizer to improve the efficiency of freight transportation.”