Morocco has decided to halve the tender for new trains that the National Office of Railways (ONCF) must have by 2030. As reported by Maghreb Intelligence, this means that orders have been reduced to 132 units instead of the 168 initially planned.
The most expensive package includes high-speed and long-distance rolling stock and is valued at 760 million euros. The ONCF has also split the major tender it launched in mid-month for the initial purchase of 168 trains into two lots, reports the Moroccan portal.
Several European companies have already shown interest in the tender, including Spain’s Talgo and France’s Alstom, which has already supplied the first twelve high-speed trains to Al Boraq.
However, according to Maghreb Intelligence, Alstom will not participate in the Moroccan tender this time due to the diplomatic crisis between Paris and Rabat. Alstom’s management has therefore decided to hand over the negotiation of the current contract to its Spanish subsidiary, Alstom España, which will be in charge of developing and presenting the tender, as well as participating in the negotiations with the ONCF and the Moroccan government for the supply of trains to the Moroccan operator.
Alstom’s Spanish subsidiary has been supplying various rail vehicles to Morocco for more than a decade. In 2011, for example, it shipped 190 Citadis trams for the Rabat and Casablanca transport systems.
“Alstom hopes to overcome the complexity of diplomatic relations between Morocco and France. It also intends to take advantage of the new geopolitical game that has made Spain a privileged partner of the Moroccan government,” explains the Moroccan portal.
According to ONCF’s tender announcement, the first lot, estimated to be worth 760 million euros, comprises 18 high-speed trains and 40 long-distance trains. The second lot comprises 150 trains for the regional network and includes 60 medium-distance trains and another 50 for metropolitan services, with an estimated cost of 690 million Euro.
The document also indicates that out of the 168 trains announced by the Moroccan company, 36 will be optional: six high-speed trains, ten medium-distance trains and twenty metropolitan trains. Although it has split the order in two, the ONCF assures that this does not mean that at the end of the competitive dialogue – a process chosen to regulate competition – the entire contract can be awarded to a single manufacturer.
Source : Atalayar