Etihad Rail’s AED1.2bn agreement with Spain’s CAF Group

Etihad Rail, the developer and operator of the UAE national railway network, has signed a AED1.2 billion (USD327 million) agreement with CAF Group, a Spanish rail manufacturer, for designing, manufacturing, supplying, and maintaining passenger trains for the Etihad Rail project. 

The agreement serves as a major step forward in the development of the UAE’s passenger transport services, in line with company’s commitment to completing the national and strategic project on schedule, and according to the best criteria and practices. 

Etihad Rail’s trains will connect 11 cities and regions in the UAE. Each train will have a seating capacity of more than 400 and will reach speeds of up to 200 kilometres per hour. Offering a variety of seating segments, the trains will serve as a major addition to the public transport system in the UAE. 

A launch date for the passenger service has not yet been announced. 

Etihad Rail signed three Memoranda of Understanding (MoUs) in May of 2022 with Renfe, Spain’s national railway operator; High Speed 1, the first high-speed railway in United Kingdom (UK); and GB Railfreight, the British rail freight company. The MoUs are based on exchanging knowledge, expertise, and best practices in freight and passenger rail services and rail operations. This comes as part of Etihad Rail’s efforts for developing railway services as part of the UAE National Railways Programme. 

Etihad Rail legal team was led by general counsel Iryna Telychko (pictured).