Egyptian Minister of Transportation Kamel al-Wazir witnessed Wednesday signing of a memorandum of understanding (MOU) on the exchange of train drivers between Egyptian National Railways (ENR) and German railway company Deutsche Bahn (DB)
According to the MoU, the pilot project will begin with about 20 train drivers and five instructors on 1 October, the ministerial statement said.
According to the cooperation agreement, the DB will train drivers in Egypt and Germany according to German standards for 18 months.
Afterwards, DB will permanently employ the drivers as Germany suffers from a lack of skilled labour.
The ENR also intends to provide the German railways company with train drivers who meet the necessary requirements.
In addition, DB will train Egyptian train driving instructors for a period of nine months in Egypt and Germany according to German standards and methodologies, including work culture.
In August, Egypt’s Ministry of Transport signed a preliminary agreement with DB and the Egyptian private-sector company El-Sewedi Electric on the management and operation of the country's first high-speed electric train network.
The agreement defines the basic terms for the management and operation of the three-line, high-speed electric train network in Egypt that covers 2,000 kilometres, according to a statement from the transport ministry.
The step comes in preparation for signing a final contract to hand over the management and operation of the network to the German company for a period of 15 years, extendable for another 15 years, the statement read.
The agreement guarantees the transfer of expertise, including training of Egyptian engineers and technicians, according to El-Wazir at the time.
Both agreements are part of Egypt’s plan to cooperate with the private sector and capitalise on international companies' know-how in the field of management and operation of modern transport projects.
DB operates 34,000 kilometres of railways in Germany. It also operates railways in the US, the UK, Denmark, the Netherlands, Poland, Canada, Uruguay, India and the UAE.