(Annews24) French President Emmanuel Macron and Morocco’s King Mohammed VI are inaugurating Morocco’s first high-speed rail line, the first ever such line in Africa.
The $2bn project was launched in September 2011 by the king and Nicolas Sarkozy, the former president of France, which jointly funded the line with several Arab states.
Known as the LGV – French for “high speed line” – it will connect the economic hubs of Tangier and Casablanca in 2 hours 10 minutes at a speed of 320 km/h instead of almost 5 hours on a regular train. It will be inaugurated on Thursday.
Morocco bought 12 high speed trains from French train manufacturer Alstom.
The king named the first line Al Boraq after a mythical winged creature that transported the prophets to the heavens
The high-speed line was completed at a total cost of 22.9 billion dirhams ($2.4 billion), according to state news agency MAP. Transport officials were not immediately available for comment.
Morocco bought 12 double-decker high-speed-trains from French group Alstom that will be operated by state-owned railway ONCF which expects six million passengers on the new train service annually.
Officials have said the project will boost growth in Tangier and help attract more investments to northern Morocco where one of Africa’s largest ports is located.