His Highness Sheikh Theyab bin Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Chairman of the Office of Development and Martyrs Families Affairs at the Presidential Court, and Chairman of Etihad Rail, has witnessed the signing of a strategic partnership agreement between Etihad Rail, developer and operator of the UAE National Rail Network, and ADNOC. The agreement aims to establish railway services between Abu Dhabi City and Al Dhannah region.

In the presence of His Excellency Dr Sultan bin Ahmed Al Jaber, Minister of Industry and Advanced Technology, and Managing Director and Group CEO of ADNOC, the agreement was signed at ADNOC Headquarters by His Excellency Shadi Malak, CEO of Etihad Rail, and Saif Al Falahi, Executive Vice President, Group Business Support & Special Tasks at ADNOC.

His Highness Sheikh Theyab bin Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan said: “The UAE’s railway network is a key contributor to the UAE’s strategic visions across various sectors. An integrated rail network is an essential aspect of infrastructure within major cities and countries across the globe, and Etihad Rail is playing a similarly significant role in the UAE’s sustainable development.”

His Highness Sheikh Theyab bin Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan added that the collaboration underscores a commitment to the rail industry, showcasing the vision of Etihad Rail to provide world-class passenger experiences. His Highness also said the collaboration bolsters the UAE’s transportation and logistics infrastructure – bringing it to a global standard – in line with the UAE leadership’s vision, driving economic development through collaboration between government entities.

His Excellency Dr Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber said: “In line with our leadership’s directives to enable a sustainable and lower carbon future, this partnership with Etihad Rail underscores ADNOC’s commitment to supporting sustainable transportation solutions and infrastructure development projects in the UAE. It also highlights ADNOC’s drive to explore opportunities to strengthen partnerships and implement solutions and technologies that accelerate efforts to reduce emissions, as we work towards our Net Zero by 2045 target.”

The agreement will also enable the two companies to share knowledge and expertise, and explore opportunities to launch dedicated railway services between the cities of Abu Dhabi and Al Dhannah in the Al Dhafra region.

Through this partnership, ADNOC will provide the opportunity for its employees to travel between Abu Dhabi and Dhannah via the railway network in the future. It is expected that the partnership will pave the way for new areas of cooperation with other companies to support Etihad Rail’s national operations.

The partnership is consistent with leadership directives to advance national capabilities and resources to support sustainable development in the UAE for the benefit of citizens and residents. It will also serve as an important benchmark for other companies exploring opportunities to leverage the success of the National Rail Network, one of the largest and most important infrastructure projects in the UAE.

Etihad Rail continues to progress the development of its passenger services. In February 2022, it signed a green loan agreement with First Abu Dhabi Bank (FAB) for the financing of railway passenger services, with a total value of AED1.99 billion, and another agreement in June 2022 with Spain’s CAF company for designing, manufacturing, supplying, and maintaining passenger trains for the Etihad Rail project, valued at AED1.2 billion.