Israel plans $27bn domestic rail expansion and possible line to Saudi Arabia

A train in Israel (Denis Kabanov/Dreamstime)
Israel has announced plans for a $27bn expansion to its rail network that would connect the entire country by high-speed rail.

The “One Israel” project would link Kiryat Shemona at the northern tip of the country to Eilat in the south, according to a press release from Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

The route would be centred around Tel Aviv, allowing for travel across the country in under two hours. It would also allow for freight to be moved by rail from Eilat to ports on the Mediterranean Sea.

No time frame or financing model was given for the plan but Netanyahu said the budget may rise. Reuters reported that Israel’s finance minister said the line would be ready in the next decade.

Further rail plans to link Israel to the Arabian Peninsula have also been tentatively floated by Netanyahu, but the timeline and funding are vague.

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