The order, one of Harsco's first and by far its largest from Saudi Arabia for railway track maintenance equipment, will support the kingdom's new North-South Railway system project, a major $2 billion initiative to construct a 2,300 kilometer (1,400 mile) rail line that has been described as the most important land transportation project ever built in Saudi Arabia. The railway will link Saudi Arabia's rich phosphate and bauxite reserves in the north with its processing facilities in Jubail on the Persian Gulf, while also providing a new rail route for freight and passenger traffic.
The North-South line is also expected to spur additional infrastructure development of adjacent cities and towns along the route. This could lead to future bidding opportunities for Harsco, which operates in Saudi Arabia through its joint venture partnership with the Jeddah-based Al-Baroom Group, one of the largest construction sector companies in Saudi Arabia.
Deliveries under the order are scheduled to be completed by the end of this year.