Saudi financial robo-advisory firm Abyan Capital secures $18m in funding  

Saudi financial robo-advisory firm Abyan Capital secures $18m in funding  
Saudi financial robo-advisory firm Abyan Capital secures $18m in funding  

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Jeddah - Yasmine El Tohamy - RIYADH: The volume of minerals and goods transported by Saudi Arabia Railways reached 6.34 million tonnes during the first quarter of 2024, an annual increase of 9 percent.   

According to its quarterly report, SAR stated that over 2.7 million passengers utilized its services, marking a 23 percent growth compared to same period last year. 

Passenger rides also increased by 3 percent, reaching a total of 8,252 trips across the East Train, North Train, and Haramain Express train networks. 

The surge in the total volume of minerals and goods has helped reduce the number of truck trips on the country’s roads by more than 500,000, leading to improved traffic safety, less wear and tear on road infrastructure, and lower carbon emissions. 

Bashar bin Khaled Al-Malik, CEO of SAR, affirmed on X, that these outcomes highlight the growing demand for distinguished railway transportation services, known for being among the most reliable, safe, and eco-friendly modes of travel. 

He further noted that SAR is steadily progressing toward achieving its national strategic goals, initiating several pioneering and distinctive future projects during the first quarter of 2024. This includes the signing of the luxury “Desert Dream” train agreement, a first in the Middle East and North Africa, as reported by the Saudi Press Agency. 

Additionally, Al-Malik disclosed that the train is slated to commence its inaugural trips by the end of 2025. He elaborated that SAR has connected the logistics zone to the second industrial city in Dammam to the railway network. 

This connection will provide access to King Abdulaziz Port in Dammam, the Riyadh Dry Port, as well as the ports of Jubail and Ras Al-Khair. 

Furthermore, in February, SAR inked two memorandums of understanding with the Saudi Authority for Industrial Cities and Technology Zones, also known as Modon. 

This collaboration with the National Industrial Development and Logistics Program aims to strengthen supply chains in the central and eastern regions, enhancing product access to local, regional, and global markets. 

During the same month, SAR finalized a contract with Stadler, a Swiss rail vehicle manufacturer, to acquire 10 new passenger trains for the East Train network. 

The deal will increase the number of passengers using the transport system in the region to 3.8 million a year. This will enable the operation of direct “Express” trips from Riyadh to Dammam to meet the escalating demand for trips between the two primary cities in the Kingdom. 

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