H.H. Sheikh Theyab bin Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Etihad Rail, has attended the Board of Directors meeting for Oman and Etihad Rail Company (OER), the developer and operator of the UAE-Oman Rail Network.
The meeting, which convened in Muscat, highlighted the achievements and efforts towards expediting project preparations, and the schedule to build the UAE-Oman railway network.
H.H. Sheikh Theyab bin Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan was accompanied by Suhail bin Mohammed Al Mazrouei, Minister of Energy and Infrastructure and Chairman of the Board of Directors of OER; Saeed bin Hamoud Al Maawali, Omani Minister of Transport, Communications and Information Technology and Vice Chairman of the Board of Directors of OER; Mohammed bin Nakhira Al Dhaheri, UAE Ambassador to Oman, in addition to board members and several other officials.
Sheikh Theyab bin Mohammed was briefed on advancements that support the continued development of the project, which will see the construction of an efficient railway network that links Sohar Port with the UAE National Railway Network, in line with global standards.
Sheikh Theyab said, “The joint rail network will contribute to reinforcing the strong strategic and cultural ties between the UAE and the Sultanate of Oman. Critically, it aligns with the directives of our visionary leadership, who have always prioritised the enhancement of both economic and cultural ties between our two countries.
“We remain steadfast in our commitment to the completion of this transformative project and recognise the pivotal role the establishment of a robust railway network that unites the two nations will play in driving sustainable socio-economic growth.”
Sheikh Theyab bin Mohammed and the board discussed key project milestones, particularly the innovative design strategies tailored to the diverse terrain across both the UAE and Oman. Among the achievements highlighted were the innovative engineering solutions employed to tackle diverse terrains along the route, which led to a 25 percent reduction in tunnel works and a 50 percent reduction in bridge construction. The project boasts several 2.5-kilometre-long tunnels and bridges reaching a height of 34 metre. Specialised hydrological solutions were also incorporated to address diverse weather conditions along the network.
The board also reviewed the progress of different tenders for all project packages, encompassing civil works, systems, locomotives, and trailers. During the meeting, the members also praised the company’s collaborations with partners in the UAE and Oman, highlighting the active involvement of local companies and their cooperation with prominent global companies specialised in these fields as well as the significance of driving local added value across all aspects of the project.
Echoing these sentiments, Suhail bin Mohamed Faraj Faris Al Mazrouei said, “We take pride in the collective efforts dedicated to the advancement of the UAE-Oman Rail Network, which is a crucial link in the integrated transport and logistics services that will extend across region, and will provide social benefits, economic advantages, and competitive incentives for both countries. Oman and Etihad Rail Company is committed to supporting all sectors by fostering promising commercial and investment opportunities, in addition to our capacity to attract, develop, and train Emirati and Omani talents. This commitment contributes to solidifying the positions of both countries as global logistical hubs for the import and distribution of goods to regional markets.”
For his part, Saeed bin Hamoud Al Maawali, Vice Chairman of the Board of Directors, said, “The project’s remarkable progress underscores its strategic importance both locally and regionally. Within a short period, the project has successfully attracted leading companies globally across various sectors, evidenced by the signing of long-term agreements and partnerships with various local and regional companies.”
He added that the project’s success is a result of the commendable efforts of the teams operating across various sectors, serving as a testament to the strong relations between the two countries.
In addition, the board recognised the advancements in tender processes for different project segments and commended the strong partnerships established, both domestically and globally. The importance of localisation in stimulating economic contributions was accentuated, alongside the efficient coordination between parties in the UAE and Oman, as demonstrated by the rapid issuance of permits and certificates.
The board also discussed the company’s collaborative strategies with various firms in the UAE and Oman to establish integrated logistics solutions. These initiatives aim to interlink the railway network with ports, maritime and land shipping, and logistics services, including warehousing and distribution, to cater to the evolving demands of customers.
The meeting concluded with a discussion of plans required for the integration of logistics solutions, linking train networks, ports, freight, and services to meet customer needs. The board emphasised the project’s role in enhancing commercial activity and social cohesion by linking economic, industrial, commercial, and residential areas through a railway network, as part of the joint efforts by both parties in various aspects of economic and social development.
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