February 28 - Etihad Rail, the developer and operator of the UAE's national rail network, has secured USD1.28 billion financing for Stage One of its national railway project.
Stage One of the Etihad Rail network will extend 264 km from Shah and Habshan to Ruwais. Construction work on the route is already well underway and Etihad Rail took delivery of its first shipment of wagons during December 2012. The company expects to receive its first delivery of locomotives during this quarter.
H.E. Dr. Nasser Saif Al Mansoori, ceo of Etihad Rail commented, "Etihad Rail is on schedule to seeing the first train run from Habshan to Ruwais by the end of this year."
The new railway will transport Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) shipments of granulated sulphur for export at the port of Ruwais.
The five-year loan is financed on a club deal basis by National Bank of Abu Dhabi PJSC (NBAD), Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ (BTMU), Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank (ADCB) and HSBC Bank Middle East Limited (HSBC), with NBAD acting as both the facility and security agent of the loan.
When completed the UAE's national rail network will span 1,200 km, connecting key centres of industry and population, boosting trade and social development. The railway line is a government-led project that aims to deliver a secure transportation link between the UAE and its GCC neighbours.