Iraq to Buy New Trains

Iraq has reportedly asked several international companies to submit bids for the supply of 10 passenger trains.

Bloomberg reports that France's Alstom, and China's Datong Electric Locomotive Company have been invited to submit bids, as have manufacturers in Turkey, Iran and Croatia.

Jawad al-Kharsan, a spokesman for the national railway company, said the winning company will have to supply two trains this year and the remaining eight by 2013.

The two new trains will run on a track linking Baghdad with Basra, he said. Iraq bought 40,000 tons of railway track worth $50 million two years ago to complete and upgrade Iraq’s railway grid.

The railway company has 100 passenger wagons that are out of service and has invited the same companies to rehabilitate 50 of them for five trains. It also owns about 1,000 cargo wagons that are working and 4,000 that are out of service.

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