Etihad Rail, developer and operator of the UAE National Rail Network, and DHL Global Forwarding , have signed a strategic partnership agreement at the Middle East Rail 2023 event, held at Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre (ADNEC). The agreement will see the establishment of a joint venture company that will enable DHL Global Forwarding to use Etihad Rail’s network to conduct its main operations within the UAE.
Under the terms of the agreement, DHL Global Forwarding will adopt rail as one of its major modes of transportation to distribute goods throughout the UAE via the railway network that links key industrial hubs.
The newly formed joint venture company will further strengthen the sustainable freight offering within the UAE, operating across the Etihad Rail Network. The agreement is expected to significantly reduce pressures on road transport and boost trade, commerce, and logistics in the UAE, while also playing a key role in helping the UAE meet its environmental responsibility commitments.
The ambitious 20-year partnership between Etihad Rail and DHL will deliver significant benefits for businesses, optimising use of time and resources, reducing costs and enabling more efficient asset management. The partnership will also strengthen end-to-end logistics and supply chain services for customers in the region. DHL’s robust rail freight products offer secure and reliable transportation, and is also an environmentally friendly alternative.
With rail considered to be one of the most sustainable modes of transport, Etihad Rail is committed to contributing to the UAE’s Net Zero by 2050 goals, whereby the UAE National Rail Network will contribute to reducing carbon emissions in the road transport sector by 21 per cent by 2050, with each train trip removing up to 300 trucks off the road.
Amadou Diallo, CEO Middle East & Africa, DHL Global Forwarding, said: “The UAE’s increasing focus on infrastructural investment in the logistics sector, and DHL Global Forwarding is excited to be part of this journey to support growing capacity requirements through rail freight. Our decades of expertise in rail and multimodal transport solutions, providing fast, secure, and cost-effective connections, make us the right partner to support the development of the railway industry in the UAE.”
Gottfried Eymer, CEO of Etihad Rail Freight, said: “We welcome DHL Global Forwarding as a key partner for Etihad Rail as we embark on fulfilling our ambitious targets. With freight operations operational since February, Etihad Rail is pleased to introduce further sustainable transport models within the UAE and continue to stimulate economic growth and sustained social development in the region.”
The agreement between Etihad Rail and DHL Global Forwarding is one of the largest collaborations for the transport industry and showcases the respective organisation’s commitment to the UAE’s sustainability agenda.