Škoda Group, a Czech engineering company, has signed significant contracts with Egyptian National Railways to modernise and maintain at least 280 electro-diesel locomotives
According to Škoda Group, the two contracts – worth approximately US$1.08bn – covers the overhaul of locomotives over a period of nine years and the provision of full-service maintenance for up to 15 years. The company has noted the contracts mark its expansion into the African continent.
CEO of Škoda Group, Didier Pfleger, commented, “These contracts mark a historic milestone for Škoda Group. We are uniquely positioned to deliver superior locomotive rehabilitation and overhaul services. Our aim is to use our skills and experience to build lasting relationships and make a long-term contribution to improving the quality of the rail sector in the Middle East and Africa. The success of being awarded with this project is further confirmation of our strategy of expanding into foreign markets.”
To start the project, two prototype locomotives will be modernised at Škoda Group’s site at Šumperk in the Czech Republic. The remaining locomotives will then be overhauled and maintained in Egypt.
The traction and pneumatic systems will be overhauled, and the braking systems and electrical wiring comprehensively modernised. The cabs will be transformed, with new control panels installed and the train control system modified. The locomotives will also undergo ‘a major design makeover’.
In addition, Škoda Group will provide training in both Egypt and in the Czech Republic to enable Egyptian staff to carry out work on the locomotives to European industrial standards.