Making History: All 7 Emirates are Connected via the Launch of Etihad Rail

The long-awaited Etihad Rail has finally completed the UAE National Rail Network, joining over 900 km of track that links all seven of the UAE’s emirates.

Stepping into 2023 in style, the UAE’s hotly anticipated National Rail Network, a massive project that has been in the pipeline for more than ten years. The railway not only connects each of the emirates, but also includes four major ports but also various logistics hubs, with nearly 600 bridges and crossings, 38 locomotives and six tunnels. This represents a more competitive workforce as the new connectivity increases productivity across different industries.

But what the public really want to know is, when will the passenger trains be opening? Commuters between Abu Dhabi, Sharjah, and Dubai will rejoice when they can travel those long distances in style on the train whilst getting work done, rather than burning up the tarmac in cars. According to spokespeople at Eithad Rail, the passenger side is due to be launched soon.

During the opening ceremony for the cargo rail, His Royal Highness Sheikh Mohammed said: “We are proud of the performance of our sons and daughters who have worked hard over the years to build an ambitious strategic project that will propel our national economy to greater heights.

“Connecting the Emirates via a national railway network strengthens our capabilities and competitiveness and consolidates our unity”.

The first part of the network has been open since 2016, but now includes a main line from Ghuweifat near the border of Saudi Arabia, all the way to Fujairah. The second stage started in 2020, and we are hoping for the passenger side to be completed by the end of 2023. This will also contribute an estimated AED 200 billion to the national economy and save around AED 8 billion on the cost of roads, as well as tourism benefits of up to AED 23 billion.

The project also supports the UAE’s sustainable development goals and contributes to achieving the UAE Net Zero by 2050, through reducing carbon emissions in the road transport sector by 21 percent, and reducing road transportation emissions per capita by 40 percent, by 2050.

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