China to finance 85% of rail link to Egypt new capital: official

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China will finance 85 percent of an electric train project in Egypt’s new capital, assistant to Egyptian transport minister Amr Shaat said Tuesday.

Egypt has earlier signed a memo of understanding with China worth about $739 million for an electric train, aimed to provide a safe and modern means of transportation for commuters between Greater Cairo and the New Administrative Capital.

According to the memo signed during President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi’s visit to China for the ninth annual BRICS summit, Egyptian government will bear $500 million of the electric train project, Shaat added.

China will establish the electric train with 11 stops, providing the wagons with a $740 million loan, to be repaid throughout 15 years, with a grace period of five years, MENA reported on Sunday.

The construction of the electric train will take three years, but Egypt’s President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi has asked the Chinese company to reduce the period of execution to two years.

The electric train will connect with the third line of the subway in Salam City, linking the cities of Greater Cairo, Obour, Shorouk, Badr, and the New Administrative Capital through the 10th of Ramadan City.

It will facilitate the transport of goods and production materials to and from the cities and industrial areas located along the railway line.

Egypt hopes the project would contribute to enhancing the efforts of urban development along the course of the train, as well as the reduction of traffic congestion in addition to energy conservation and eco-friendliness.