The French Development Agency (AFD) has granted a loan of EUR 80 million to the National Office of Moroccan Railways (ONCF) to finance the final installment of the project high-speed line Tangiers-Casablanca.
„The implementation of this financing brings the contribution of AFD to more than EUR 300 million and that of France to more than EUR 1 billion, which is more than 50% of the financing of the high speed rail project”, Moroccan Minister of Economy and Finance, Mohamed Boussaid said.
„The rail project is the fruit of a partnership based on the confidence between Morocco and France and on financing provided by the various French players to the extent of 50% of the financing needs”, the French Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs, Jean-Yves Le Drian explained.
It should be noted that this new support from AFD will enable the financing of this Tangiers -Casablanca HSR project, whose total cost initially estimated at MAD 20 billion (approximately EUR 1.8 billion), and which, according to the ONCF officials, has „generated a small additional cost”.
According to the Moroccan authorities, this project, which is intended to be structured, is part of the logic of creating regional development hubs, ensuring a modern and rapid link between the Casablanca cluster and the new Tangiers cluster.
Designed for a maximum speed of 350 km/h and operated at a commercial speed of 320 km/h, this high-speed line aims to carry 6 million passengers per year, with an average passenger capacity rate of 70%. Each train will have a capacity ranging from 532 to 1064 seats.
According to the director general of the ONCF, Mohamed Rabie Khlie, all the works, including those of the signaling, will be completed before the end of 2017. The first four months of 2018 will be devoted to the testing of the high speed rail system in order to prepare its homologation.