Morocco’s King Mohammed VI and French President Emmanuel Macron have inaugurated what has been described as Africa‘s fastest train, with a trip from the northwestern city of Tangier to the capital, Rabat.
The railway, known as the LGV, will more than halve the travel time between the industrial and commercial hubs of Casablanca and Tangier to two hours and 10 minutes, instead of four hours and 45 minutes, according to officials.
The project was completed after seven years of work in a 22.9bn dirhams ($2.4bn) project joint-funded by France, Morocco, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates.
Morocco bought 12 double-decker high-speed trains from the French group Alstom to be operated by the state-owned railway ONCF, which expects six million passengers to use the new service annually.
The king and the French president on Thursday boarded the train at Tangier after they were handed tickets by the Director General of Morocco’s National Railway Office, Mohamed Rabie Khlie, according to state news agency MAP.
Last year, Jean-Yves Le Drian, France’s foreign minister, called the railway “the fastest train on the African continent” during a visit to Morocco to sign a loan deal between the ONCF and the French Development Agency.
Authorities have said the project is part of a larger rail plan aimed at upgrading Morocco’s transportation system and …