French company Thales has won a €109m contract from the Egyptian National Railways (ENR) to modernise signalling systems on the Cairo – Alexandria railway corridor.
Under the deal, Thales will modernise the signals, telecommunications and central traffic control system of the 208km Cairo – Alexandria line, which carries 25 million passengers a year.
The deal also includes design, supply, construction, phasing, commissioning and maintenance services.
Work under the project is expected to take four years, and will improve the safety and capacity of the line.
Completion of the project will allow ENR to transport 32 million passengers a year by raising speeds from 140km/h to 160km/h, and reducing the time between trains from 10 to five minutes.
Thales country director in Egypt Michelangelo Neri said that the project is part of the long-term strategy of modernising the railway infrastructure.
"It is the first step of the ambitious renovation programme for the signalling system launched by the Ministry of Transport and the Egyptian National Railways network," Neri said.
The World Bank is providing EGP938m (€102m) to the Egyptian National Railways to carry out the project.
The project will also include construction of a central control tower to coordinate train traffic.
Thales has been working in Egypt for 30 years and is currently involved in the construction of the integrated communication & supervision and fare collection system on Line 3 of the Cairo Metro.
Cairo Metro Line 3, which will be 33km long with 29 stations, of which 27 will be underground, will connect Cairo Airport in the east to Imbaba and Mohandisseen in the west, crossing the downturn area and Heliopolis.
Image: Thales will update the signals, telecommunications and central traffic control system on the 208km Cairo – Alexandria railway line. Photo: courtesy of Thales Group.