Italian firm signs US$1.36 bn railroad deal with Islamic Republic of Iran Railways

Posted on 7th July 2017

Italy’s Ferrovie dello Stato (FS), the holding company that owns the country’s rail operator, is set to sign a $1.36b rail deal with its Iranian counterpart, the Islamic Republic of Iran Railways (IRIR) to build a high-speed railroad between the central cities of Qom and Arak.

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The memorandum of understanding (MoU) which involves the constructing Qom–Arak high speed railway line in Iran is to be signed in Tehran on 11 July, according to Irna, the official Iranian news agency.

The deal follows an earlier agreement that saw Italy promise Iran $5.6b in export credits in return for contracts to build the 135km Qom-Arak line and a 320km link between Tehran and Hamedan.

Italy will also provide rolling stock for high-speed and conventional lines, training for Iranian railway managers and a research centre to develop railway technology.

Iran is planning an extension of its railway system. According to IRIR’s plans, the present network of 15,000km will be expanded to 25,000km by 2025. Some 7,500km of this extra track is already under construction.

Italy’s FS has also been connected with the planning and construction of a high-speed rail corridor between Tehran, Qom and Isfahan, and may also undertake the electrification of the rail link between Tehran and Tabriz on the way to the Caucasus, according to Constructionweekonline news report.

Altogether about $25b of work is under way or will begin in the next five years. Companies from Russia, China, France and other countries are undertaking work on particular lines.

The contract includes building the infrastructure as well as supplying high speed trains for Iran. The Italian company will also be responsible for holding technical courses for IRIR personnel.

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