Presentation of the transport sector


In Egypt, the road transport is the dominant sub-system. Rail is used for only 8% of domestic passenger transport1 and 2% in freight transport2. Rail transport is only used on a national level, as no railway links to

other countries exist.

The Egyptian transport sector represents

_ 10,250 Mio. € turnover

_ 9% of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) incl. Suez Canal (approximately 5%)

_ More than 1.5 Mio. employees

_ Growth rate 2.5 %

_ The services are provided by the private and public sector

The infrastructure is composed of

_ Road network length – 83,500 km, thereof 24,500 km motorways (under responsibility of GARBELT)

_ Rail network length 9,566 km, However actually operated are only 5,085 km

_ 14 ports (Mediterranean Sea and Red Sea)

_ 20 civil airports with paved runways (of which 10 are international airports)7


Rail Transport

Rail Passenger Transport


The railway sector plays a significant role in the Egyptian economy and is an essential mode of transport for low-income Egyptians. However, international passenger transport on rail does not exist, as there are no railway connections to the neighbouring countries. Total national rail passenger transport was 52,624 Mio. pkm in 2007

Rail passenger transport has a share of about 8% (railways and metro):

                               Million pass/trips/day

Railways                              1.1

Metro                                  2.0

Public Bus                          5.4

Intercity bus transport      0.9

Other public buses           4.2

Intercity shared taxi        16.9

Private Car                       10.6


Rail freight transport


The railway sector plays a significant role in the Egyptian economy. However the total Rail freight volume has been decreasing strongly from 4,064 Mio. tkm in 2005 to 1,592 Mio. tkm in 20099.

Main goods transported are iron, charcoal, petroleum, commodities, phosphate, wheat and containers.

International freight transport on Rail does not exist, as there are no railway connections to the neighbouring countries.


Railway Network


The Egyptian operating railway network has a total length of 5,085 km and is used for passenger transport and freight transport. Sixty percent of the network is concentrated in the Nile

Delta and along the Nile Valley. The network reaches most of the Egyptian

population, even relatively small population centres are served by minor lines.

However, these lines are mostly used by small and poor quality trains. The

length of the electrified network is 574 km (6% of the total network).

_ The whole network uses standard gauge of 1,435 mm.

_ About 15% of Egyptian National Railways' (ENR) network is equipped with colour light signals.

_ There are no high speed lines within ENR's network and the maximum speed on the network is 140 km/h.

_ About 15% of the network is equipped with Relay Interlocking; the rest is equipped with Mechanical Interlocking.

_ The rolling stock is composed of

- About 700 locomotives;

- About 1,000 train sets (passager transport vehicles);

- About 3,509 coaches (passenger transport vehicles);

- About 10,696 goods transport wagons.

There are no functioning railway links with adjacent countries. The situation is as follows:

_ Libya: a railway connection is under construction (standard gauge of 1,435 mm);

_ Sudan: not connection, different gauge between the countries;

_ Israel: defunct;

_ Palestine Territories: defunct.

Egypt follows the European standards when electrifying the signalling system, and in the fields of interlocking, power supply and telecommunication.


Investments in Interoperability and Definition of Freight Corridors (Action 12)


The planned investments regarding the upgrading of railway infrastructure are summarized in the Fifth Plan 2008/2013. The planned renewals cover tracks and stations

Egypt would also like to implement the Abu Tartour – Qena – Safaga corridor as a dedicated freight corridor, with a length of 680 km.

The aim of this corridor would be to improve the transport of phosphate from the mines to the export ports.

This line would also link the Safaga port to the network of the Nile valley. "Safaga/Qena" will be used to transport the imported corn and the exports and imports of Aluminum Complex in Naga Hamady

The freight corridor's specifications are as follows:

_ single line

_ maximum speed of 60 km/h

_ mechanical signalling system

_ Qena / Safaga- Line (14 stations) – increase from 2 trains in 2009 to 20 trains in 2013

_ Qena / Abu Tartour-Line (22 stations) – increase from 4 trains in 2009 to 20 trains in 2013


Egyptian National Railways and Main Responsible Authorities in Rail Transport


ENR is the national railway company. Rail infrastructure is owned by and rail services are provided by ENR.

ENR is a public entity created in 1980 reporting to the Ministry of Transport (MoT).

The principle purpose of ENR is to establish and operate the railway network on the national level. The ENR law sets the legislative background. Article 2 of the law specifies that:

_ ENR should establish the railway networks and operate them and their related services throughout Egypt;

_ ENR should establish, manage and maintain the firms and bodies necessary to perform these services;


_ ENR should implement the projects necessary to achieve its objectives.

The Ministry of Transport is the relevant authority for the railways sector. The Metro is supervised by Ministry of Transport and owned by tunnel authority, operated by an operation and management company owned

by ENR.


Structural Reform (Action 13)

Separation of Operation and Infrastructure


ENR started its restructuring in 2007. The resulting organizational structure has been approved by the Central

System for the Regulation and Management with the decision No. 417 of 2007.

The reform process will happen in three steps:


Phases of Structural Reform of the Railways

_______ _______ ____      











The ENR transformation program is an ambitious five year program which commenced two years ago.

Up to September 2009 these key milestones have been achieved:

Organization structure

_ The new organizational structure was implemented by June 2008. This entailed the migration of all 73,000 employees into new positions. The activities of ENR have been divided in four business units

(completed in July 2008):

- Long distance passenger unit;

- Short distance passenger unit;

- Freight unit; and

- Infrastructure unit to operate, maintain and renew the network.

_ Subsidiaries have been created to enable greater focus on selected activities.

_ Implementation of the Rail Safety Regulator, an entity within the MoT tasked with monitoring and investigating all safety relevant aspects of ENR.

_ New safety organization structure within ENR.


Finances and Regulatory Structure


_ PSO secured 44 Mio. EUR in additional revenues for ENR on a yearly basis. (Reached in September 2007)




_ Improved signalling as priority upgrades to four corridors.

_ ERMAS: a new company created for the rolling stock overhaul has started its activities and has been achieving its targets since February 2008.

_ IT: ENR is planning a major upgrade of its IT systems allowing for a more efficient and timely management of the company. This was launched in May / June 2008.


Commercial and Customer Service


_ The focus has been in the past years on reducing the level of fare evasion throughout the network through increased on-board controls as well as controls in stations (station close offs).

_ Individual customer service improvement targets have been set (three months, six months, yearly targets)

which are monitored on an ongoing basis.


Strategic Alliance with Italy


_ The Italian government provided eight million Euros for the recruitment of a complete management team comprising ten qualified managers to assist ENR in its transformation plan for the forthcoming years.


Twinning Project on Railways Safety


_ Establishment of Railway Safety Regulatory Unit. Establishment of an independent Accident Investigating Body (completed by 2009).

_ Implementing a Safety Management System within ENR (ongoing)

_ Staff capacity building at MoT and ENR in the field of safety (ongoing)


ENR Key Goals of Transformation until September 2009


Enhancing the safety of rail services

- Level crossing upgrades: upgrading of around 700 level crossings within the coming two years of which 345 are supposed to be completed in the first year.

- Signalling: start of signalling upgrade with a focus on the priority corridor between Cairo and Alexandria

_ Improving the customer service levels

- Visible improvements in the key customer service key performance indicators

- Start of the station improvement.

- Locomotive availability: the arrival of new 120 locomotives of which 90 were to be available in the 1st half year of 2009.

_ Developing the rail freight business

- With the arrival of the new locomotives in the 1st half year of 2009, focus will be set on preparing and ensuring an increase in transported freight volume.

_ Commercializing with social responsibility

- Discontinuation or compensation for concessions (PSO).

- An initial review of the different concessionary tariffs has already taken place in the past year.

_ Steps for achieving financial self-sustainability


National Safety Authority and Accidents investigation


The “Unit of Regularity and Insurance of the Transport Safety of the Railways” has been installed in 2007. This unit is part of the MoT and based on the decision No. 176 of 2007. It has been further developed with the

ministerial decision No. 545 of 2008. In 01.01.2008 according to the restructuring plan of the railways, the unit “Safety and Risk Management in ENR” has been established. It cooperates with the “Unit of Regularity

and Insurance of the Transport Safety of the Railways” through the twinning project.

In 01.01.2008 according to the restructuring plan of the railways; the unit “Safety and Risk Management in ENR” has been established.

The procedures for the investigation of railway accidents are as follows:

_ Initial report after the accident with the participation of all departments. Detailed description of the accident and the initial assessment of the causes, damages and delays.

_ The Unit “Safety and Risk Management” as well as the “Unit of the Safety Regulatory” of the MoT shall undertake accident investigations on the main lines and the accident hot spots.




Egypt is an important actor in the Mediterranean Region, however, regarding rail network it is an isolated country. There are no rail links with adjacent countries. European/UIC standards are the base of the ongoing

and future investment projects.

There is no proposed regional rail (freight) corridor yet. Due to the special geographic and political situation establishing an international freight corridor will be difficult.

However, a corridor to Jordan could bring major benefits to the region. Benefits could be gained by introducing an additional reliable transportation route and linking Egypt to the planned Arab rail networks.

The structural railway reform according to European guidelines has started in 2007 and should be completed in 2012. The progress so far is as planned. One part of the reorganisation deals with the foundation of an

independent national railway safety authority.


source: Status Report on the Implementetion of RTAP