The Sacyr-led Grupo Vía Central consortium (GVC) has raised a senior loan of $855m to finance the Uruguay Central Railroad project.

The Uruguay Central Railroad project comprises the rehabilitation and construction of a 273km railway line, which connects Uruguayan capital Montevideo and the city of Paso de los Toros.

The project will need an investment of $1.07bn.

The consortium raised funds from SMBC, Intesa San Paolo, IDB, CAF and CAFAM.

The consortium partners will contribute $155m while the authorities in Uruguay will invest $60m.

Sacyr holds a 40% stake in the consortium, while Uruguayan companies Saceem and Berkes respectively own a 27% and 6% stake. French company NGE holds the remaining 27% stake in the consortium.

The consortium received the contract in May.

According to the contract, GVC will finance, design and construct the project for 36 months. The consortium is also responsible for maintenance services for 18 years.

The overall project works include modernising the signalling systems, upgrading the railway level-crossings and overhauling 25 stations and passenger stops along the route.

GVC has completed the initial stage of the financial structuring to carry out the work.

In May, Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) Group member IDB Invest approved a $500m financial package for the Central Railroad project.

This rail connection is an integral part of Uruguay’s development. This project will link the Finnish firm UPM-built cellulose factory with the Montevideo port.