RIYADH — Saudi Minister of Industry and Mineral Resources Bandar Alkhorayef said that linking the industrial cities in the regions of Riyadh and the Eastern Province with the train network will contribute to raising the efficiency of logistics operations in the industrial sector and opening new paths for trade and export. He also stressed the importance of the role of the transport and logistics sector in developing the industrial and mining sectors. “This will also consolidate the Kingdom’s position as a global logistics center in line with the goals of Saudi Vision 2030,” he said.

Alkhorayef said this while addressing the signing ceremony of two memoranda of understanding (MoUs) and a number of investment contracts between the Saudi Authority for Industrial Cities and Technology Zones (MODON) and the Saudi Railways Company (SAR), with the support of the National Industrial Development and Logistics Program (NIDLP). Minister of Transport and Logistics Saleh Al-Jasser also attended the ceremony held at the second industrial city of Dammam on Wednesday.

The minister said that the NIDLP program plays a very important role in maximizing the benefits achieved from the four sectors that it supervises: industry, mining, energy, and logistics services. “It is not possible to maximize the benefits among the economic components without joint work between these sectors. Moreover, the cost associated with transportation is an essential element for the access of industrial goods to local and global markets,” he said while emphasizing that railway transportation is one of the best means in terms of cost, product price, and environment.

Alkhorayef stated that the signed MoUs aimed to enhance integration and partnership between the industrial and transportation systems, empower the industrial sector supply chains in the central and eastern regions, and support supply chains with global standards. “This is in addition to strengthening trade lines and logistical operations, and increasing the benefit achieved from industrial facilities in Jubail Industrial City and the factories of the industrial cities in Dammam that rely on SABIC products and steel products in Jubail,” he said.

It is noteworthy that the MoUs between MODON and SAR aimed to benefit from complementary capabilities and shared experiences in a number of areas of cooperation, including linking the new logistics zone with an area of one million square meters, which is scheduled to be established in the second industrial city of Dammam, with the North and East train networks. This will provide access to King Abdulaziz Port in Dammam, Riyadh Dry Port, and the ports of Jubail and Ras Al-Khair to enable the industrial sector supply chains in the central and eastern regions, and facilitate the access of products to markets locally, regionally and globally.

It also included setting frameworks for a partnership between MODON and SAR to establish a passenger transport station in the Sudair Industrial and Business City to be linked to the Northern Railway Network, with the aim of harmonizing the investment and development movement in the industrial city, raising the capacity rates of passenger trains, and enabling access to new destinations.

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