Jebel Ali set to get rail link

10 May 2012
Nasser Al Sowaidi, Chairman of Etihad Rail and Ahmed Bin Sulayem, Chairman of DP World

Nasser Al Sowaidi, Chairman of Etihad Rail and Ahmed Bin Sulayem, Chairman of DP World

The United Arab Emirates' 1,200km rail network has secured the support of the region's dominant operator, DP World.

While there has been much speculation on the viability of the project, this week Etihad Rail confirmed that it had signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to move things forward with DP World.

The MoU is a significant step forward in the development of the rail network, hailed a “strategic national project” by Etihad.

DP World Chairman, Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem, said: “With state of the art facilities at Jebel Ali, supported by the latest e-trade technology, and the Dubai Logistics Corridor linked to the Dubai World Central airport, Jebel Ali will be fully multi-modal, connecting sea-road-rail-air

“This will add enormously to the efficiency of the supply chain and reinforce Dubai’s status as both a regional hub and a gateway for cargo for the UAE and the wider Middle East, Subcontinent and East Africa region.”

The modal shift from truck to rail aims to reduce traffic at the port terminal, be more cost effective for long haul moves and be more environmentally friendly. One Etihad rail train is able to carry up to 260 teu, which if transported by road would require at least 130 trucks.

The aim is that come 2030, the Jebel Ali intermodal rail terminal will have the capacity to handle 5m teu per year.

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