The Egyptian government has signed a $200m loan agreement with the European Investment Bank to help finance the third phase of Line 3 of Cairo Metro, according to a statement by the European Commission’s EU Neighbourhood Info Centre.
Line three of the Cairo Metro system will eventually stretch to 31 miles and will link Cairo Airport to Cairo University, crossing under the two branches of the River Nile.
The country’s Ministry of Transportation has also signed a memorandum of understanding with China Railway Construction Corp for the construction of Cairo metro Line 6. The 14 mile line is expected to cost US$3.5bn.
This is the latest in a series of rail infrastructure projects across Africa. In late December the governments of Mali and Senegal signed contracts worth $2.7bn with China Railway Construction Corporation (CRCC) to rebuild and update an 800 mile line from Malian capital Bamako to Dakar on Senegal's Atlantic coast. Mali's transport minister Hachim Koumare was reported as having said the project would raise the maximum speed for passenger trains on the line from 20kmh to 100kmh.
Late in 2015 Ethiopia opened a $475 million metro rail system in capital Addis Ababa. It is the first such project to open in sub-Saharan Africa, outside South Africa.
The project, which has 20 miles of track, two lines and 39 stations, was built by China Railway Engineering Corporation (CREC) and primarily financed by China's Exim Bank. The Ethiopian Government is also considering the construction of two further lines as part of the metro.
Ethiopian Railways Corporation has signed an agreement with Shenzhen Metro to operate the lines for a period of 41 months alongside CREC.
CREC and China Civil Engineering Construction (CCECC) are also building a $4bn 450 mile rail link between Addis Ababa with the Red Sea state of Djibouti. Ethiopia wants to open 3,100 miles of railway lines by 2020 and plans to virutally treble the road network by 2017.