Etihad Rail the developer and operator of the UAE’s national railway network has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with SNTTA Cargo, the logistics division of Liberty Investment Co, (LIC), the holding company of the Liberty Group. The agreement with SNTTA Cargo, a leading freight and logistics services provider for several prestigious international airlines, will allow the company to take advantage of the benefits of rail transport for local and international customers.
The MoU between the two parties was signed by Sheikh Khalid Abdul Aziz Al Qasimi, Chairman of LIC and Dr. Nasser Saif Al-Mansoori, CEO of Etihad Rail at LIC’s corporate offices in Abu Dhabi. The agreement symbolises the benefit of integrating rail into transport infrastructure, giving importers and exporters better control over costs and stronger competitive edge. In addition to moving goods in containers, SNTTA and Liberty are exploring the possibility of deploying the rail as a transportation mode for moving cars, SUV’s and light trucks.
Established in Sharjah, UAE, in 1976, SNTTA Cargo has long-standing partnerships with leading national and international airlines including Emirates Airlines, Singapore Airlines, Saudi Arabian Airlines, Royal Jordanian, Iraqi Airways, Shaheen Airways, SriLankan Airlines, Kuwait Airways, Pakistan International Airlines and Sudan Airways. The company acts as Cargo Agent for Fly Dubai in Sharjah, Abu Dhabi, Al Ain, Ras Al Khaimah, Fujairah and Ajman. It is also the official Ground Handling Agent for Sharjah Expo Center.
Commenting on the MoU, Dr. Al-Mansoori, Etihad Rail CEO said: “Diverse infrastructure is essential to economic development, and the strongest economies across the globe have long since integrated rail into existing infrastructure. Such a strategy not only contributes to the business growth of logistics providers and their customers, but also to economic development as a result. Etihad Rail’s MoU with SNTTA Cargo, considering its well-established presence in the UAE and with international airlines, will facilitate such growth for the UAE.”
Sheikh Khalid said: “At SNTTA Cargo, our objective is to ensure that our customers’ cargo is transported in and out of the UAE through the most reliable and safe modes. Integrating rail into our existing mode of transport portfolio will lead to improved cost efficiency and greater customer satisfaction. The advent of rail in the Middle East presents an opportunity for us to review how we move our Cargo in a more sustainable manner. We are confident of the invaluable benefits this agreement will bring. “
The Etihad Rail network caters to the transport of bulk, non-bulk and containers, offering custom-made solutions for everything from steel and cement, to food, chemical products, and more. Network routes were designed to accommodate each of these key customer sectors, with stations positioned to connect production hubs with points of import and export.
Upon completion, the Etihad Rail network will extend approximately 1,200 km across the Emirates, catering to both freight and passengers. It will connect urban and peripheral communities, facilitate trade, open up communication channels and foster economic development. The network will also form a vital part of the GCC Railway Network, linking the UAE to Saudi Arabia via Ghweifat in the west and Oman via Al Ain in the east.