Saudi Arabia seeks private investors for new metro projects

Saudi Arabia is seeking public private partnerships, PPPs, for the construction and operation of metro projects in Makkah, Jeddah, Damman and Madinah, the president of the Saudi Railways Organisation, Rumaih Mohammed Al-Rumaih, has confirmed.

Al-Rumaih revealed the plans saying negotiations for the Makkah metro were underway. “We are negotiating probably PPP involvement, the same thing applies for Jeddah, Damman and Madinah,” he said.

Moreover, Al-Rumaih confirmed that the USD 14 billion Haramain high speed line, connecting Makkah and Madinah, was expected to be completed this year and would begin operations in 2018.

”The Riyadh metro, the only metro currently under construction in the country, is now 48 percent complete and will be finished in two years time”, Al-Rumaih added.

We remind that, last week, Alstom handed over to Arriyadh Development Authority (ADA) the first of the 69 metro trainsets for Riyadh that will circulate on the lines 4, 5 and 6.

Saudi Railways president also indicated a PPP could be utilised for the proposed USD 7 billion Landbridge project connecting Jeddah and Riyadh. The plans come as Saudi Arabia and other Gulf economies continue to face economic difficulties due to low oil prices. PPPs allow governments to implement infrastructure projects without bearing the full cost burden.

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