Schroeder pushes sale of high-speed train

2nd March 2005, Comments 0 comments

2 March 2005 , MANAMA - Chances for the construction of a German Transrapid train in the Gulf gained new impetus on Wednesday with both the Qatar and Bahraini governments expressing interest during Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder's visit. Schroeder has lent his office to attempts to bring about the project in both countries as well as the United Arab Emirates (UAE). The joint venture focuses on a proposed 800-kilometre stretch linking Bahrain-Doha-Abu Dhabi. Germany would provide and build the Transrapid mag

2 March 2005  

MANAMA - Chances for the construction of a German Transrapid train in the Gulf gained new impetus on Wednesday with both the Qatar and Bahraini governments expressing interest during Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder's visit.

Schroeder has lent his office to attempts to bring about the project in both countries as well as the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

The joint venture focuses on a proposed 800-kilometre stretch linking Bahrain-Doha-Abu Dhabi. Germany would provide and build the Transrapid magnetic-levitation (maglev) railway. German engineering giants Siemens and ThyssenKrupp are responsible for developing the Transrapid.

After a meeting between Schroeder and Prime Minister Sheikh Khalifa bin Salman al-Khalifa Wednesday in Manama, Information Minister Mohammed Abdul Ghaffar said Bahrain was "very interested" in the Transrapid system.

Germany could play an important role in implementing the venture, he added.

During a meeting with Schroeder, the emir of Qatar Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani termed the project, initially linking the country with neighbouring Bahrain only, at a cost of USD 5.8 billion (EUR 4.4 billion) "very important".

The planning phase was on expected to take up to three years and construction four.

Qatar and Bahrain had on Tuesday signed an agreement to build a 45-kilometre bridge linking the two countries by 2008, which could possibly be used by the Transrapid train line.

During Schroeder's visit, ThyssenKrupp arranged to set up its own representation in the Qatari capital of Doha.

According to the German syndicate, a feasibility study by the Qatari government would assess an 800 kilometre-long magnetic- levitation line to the UAE at an estimated cost of USD 13 billion (EUR 9.9 billion).

There were also plans for a 2,000 kilometre route connecting Kuwait with the sultanate of Oman. But a decision has yet to be reached on the transport system.

DPA

Subject: German news

 

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