Oman-Etihad Rail Company will be an equally owned and jointly established company by Etihad Rail and Oman Rail.
Oman-Etihad Rail Company is a new company formed based on the agreement between Etihad Rail, the developer, and operator of the UAE National Rail Network with the Sultanate’s national developer and operator of railway networks, Oman Rail. Oman-Etihad Rail Company will be an equally owned and jointly established firm by Etihad Rail and Oman Rail. The agreement was signed by Abdulrahman Salim Al Hatmi, the group CEO of ASYAD, and CEO of Etihad Rail, Shadi Malak. Oman-Etihad Rail Company will hold an investment power of US $3 billion to develop, design, and operate a railway network connecting Sohar Port to the UAE national rail network.
Oman-Etihad Rail Company will handle the design, development, and operation of the rail network in addition to laying the groundwork and work plan for the project which includes its schedule and financial mechanisms.
The two organizations’ collective aim is to build new opportunities by making the commercial exchange and social structure strong, focusing on connecting the important urban areas and facilitating travel between communities. The project aims to build a flawless transport solution between economic and industrial zones in both Oman and UAE. Oman-Etihad Rail Company is built on the historic and strategic relations between the two countries, which both seek to create and find new possibilities and opportunities for growth and development in infrastructure, logistic industries, and transport by creating a rail and thereby connecting both countries.
Chief Executive Officer of Etihad Rail, Shadi Malak states that the agreement between the countries will lay a “strategic roadmap” for a project that will assist in strengthening the relationship between both countries and facilitate national and regional trade by connecting Sohar Port and the UAE rail network. The railway is spread across a total distance of 303 km linking Sohar to Abu Dhabi and will showcase the best international safety, security, and environmental standards providing the passengers with faster and more secure means of traveling.
The trains are designed to reduce the travel time for their passengers from Sohar to Abu Dhabi to 1hr and 40 minutes. The time taken to travel from Sohar to Al Ain would be 47 minutes, traveling at a maximum speed of 200km/hr. while the maximum speed of freight trains will be 120km/hr.
Railway project benefits
In addition to providing smoother transport facilities and a significant reduction in time, the railway network between the countries will improve the growth of the national economy of both Oman and the United Arab Emirates. Improvement in Supply- chain efficiency, cross-border trade by connecting commercial ports to the railway network, a reduction in the total cost of supply chains, and enhancing market competitiveness are some of the additional perks of the rail network that connects both countries.
Along with these benefits a gradual boost to the increase in the number of tourists, thereby increasing the tourism activities between Oman and UAE aids in strengthening the global competitiveness and thickening their positions as logistics hubs for imports and exports. The railway project will also help the private sector as it increases investment opportunities, and the rail project will create more employment opportunities across various sectors thus developing both the countries’ national human capital and making way for innovations.
Group CEO of ASYAD, Oman’s global integrated logistics service provider, Abdulrahman Salim Al Hatmi says that adding a new railway capability to the logistics sector will provide trade and logistics companies exceptional investment opportunities and permit manufacturing and industrial activities to expand beyond borders. The proposed network will complement the county’s existing ports and logistics assets which will enhance their competitiveness and open faster access to global markets. Hatmi further adds that the railway network could promote a more diverse and vigorous national economy and provide huge strategic and economic gains. All of these will improve the quality of life for both communities by supporting various initiatives of the government of Oman and UAE.