Spain wants to compete with France to win the tender for the construction of high-speed train lines in Morocco and the extension of the rail network for projects estimated at 75 billion dirhams. But these projects are experiencing fierce competition from other players…
Morocco has launched a new plan to increase its railway lines and renew its trains and several countries are trying to grab the bet or parts of the big cake. Spain has already positioned itself to win the project and believes that its main competitor is France.
“Spain has already set to work to try to win the project. But he has an obvious rival in this battle: France,” the Huffington Post Spain reported, rightly adding that “so the battle has only just begun.”
Spain wanted to secure part of this contract during the Spanish-Moroccan High Level Summit in February. The Spanish Ministry of Transport has informed the Moroccan authorities that several national companies would be interested in carrying out the various projects that will soon be developed in Morocco.
And a memorandum of understanding was signed by the Ministers of Transport and Logistics, Mohammed Abdeljalil, the Minister of Water Equipment, Nizar Baraka, as well as the Spanish Minister of Equipment, Raquel Sanchez.
The memorandum of understanding focused on rail and infrastructure as well as extensions of the airports of Tangier, Marrakech and Agadir, and the development of various ports.
Morocco intends to create up to 1,100 kilometers of high-speed lines (LGV) between Kenitra, Casablanca, Marrakech and Agadir, the purchase of new train fleets as well as 1,600 kilometers of lines added to the conventional rail network.
The publication underlines that the competition with France to win these projects will be worthy of a battle and recalls that “the relationship between the two countries (Morocco and France, editor’s note) is something that history reveals”, considering that should play in favor of France.
France, which built the Tangier-Casablanca LGV, wants to resume work for this new project, and can take advantage of the success of the first experience. But the costs will be decisive and the political conditions will also be significant.
Except that several other countries are in line to win these contracts, including South Korea. In mid-April, discussions around cooperation in the railway field were held by Mohammed Abdeljalil and the South Korean ambassador, Keeyong Chung. The discussions, which included a large Korean delegation, revolved in particular around the high-speed lines.
China is another player that does not hide its ambitions to carry out the Marrakech-Agadir LGV project. She repeatedly demonstrated this with insistence, saying that she had all the capabilities to achieve it.
Germany has also positioned itself on the project, in particular with the signing, in the presence of Minister Abdeljalil, and the German Federal Minister for Digital and Transport, Volker Wissing, on the sidelines of a workshop on mobility, of an agreement between ONCF and the German public company Deutsch Bahn by showing its interest in the construction of this high-speed rail line.
The agreement is particularly concerned with the development of rail infrastructure through the improvement of performance and capacity, the renewal and upgrading of existing infrastructure and the construction of new lines.
The ONCF intends to operate an extension of the LGV between Kenitra-Casablanca then towards Marrakech which will make it possible to make the journey Tangier-Rabat in one hour, and that of Tangier-Casablanca in 1h 35 minutes and finally Tangier Marrakech in 3 hours.
The creation of the line to Marrakech will also relieve the capacity on the already present and very busy Kenitra-Casablanca line.
The ONCF intends in addition to the extensions of the LGV to embark on regional interconnections between the conventional lines and the LGV. The office intends to finance these projects through a public-private partnership and the financial arrangement should be finalized by the end of the current year.