Saudi Arabia Approves $1Billion Expansion for North Train Freight Line
Saudi Arabia has approved a SR4 billion ($1.07 billion) investment to double the freight line of the North Train network, formerly known as the North-South Railway. This decision was announced by the kingdom's Minister of Transport and Logistics, Saleh Al Jasser, during his address at the Future Minerals Forum in Riyadh. The forum aims to facilitate the development of robust mineral value chains in the resource-rich regions of Africa, Western and Central Asia.
Addressing the audience, Al Jasser highlighted that the ongoing efforts to improve transportation facilities would bolster the mining sector in Saudi Arabia. The North Train, spanning 1,550 kilometers, serves as a vital freight line connecting phosphate and bauxite mines in the far north to the Al Baithah junction. From there, it bifurcates into a southern line leading to Riyadh and an eastern line serving downstream fertilizer production and alumina refining facilities at Ras Al Khair on the Gulf coast.
Al Jasser stated, "Many of the roads developed in the past were designed to support the mining industry. Our longest rail line, the Northern Railway (North Train Freight Line), was constructed specifically for this purpose. We have already granted approval for doubling that line, with a SR4 billion investment, to further support the mining industry." He emphasized that Saudi Arabia has laid out an ambitious strategy to position itself as a global logistics hub.
"This strategic initiative aims to stimulate the growth of the mining sector and elevate the Kingdom's global standing in logistics," noted Al Jasser. He underscored the crucial role of transportation and logistics as facilitators for the mining industry, expressing confidence in the existing robust infrastructure and collaborative partnerships with the mining sector.