Saudi Arabia's Railway Network Sees 27% Surge in Q1 2024

Over eight million passengers traveled by train during this period, exceeding previous records - SPA
Over eight million passengers traveled by train during this period, exceeding previous records - SPA
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Saudi Arabia's Railway Network Sees 27% Surge in Q1 2024

Over eight million passengers traveled by train during this period, exceeding previous records - SPA
Over eight million passengers traveled by train during this period, exceeding previous records - SPA

Saudi Arabia's railway network is witnessing a surge in activity, with passenger and cargo figures reaching new highs in the first quarter of 2024.
Over eight million passengers traveled by train during this period, exceeding previous records. This growth was registered by both urban and intercity services, SPA reported.
Over two million passengers commuted by train within cities, representing a 1.7% increase compared to Q1 2023. Intercity travel saw even more significant growth, with over six million passengers opting for train travel – a remarkable 25.41% jump year-over-year.
The positive trend extends to the cargo sector as well. More than six million tons of goods and equipment were transported by rail in Q1 2024, representing a 10.7% increase over the same period in 2023.
These figures highlight the growing importance of railways in the Kingdom's infrastructure. Efficient and reliable train services support various sectors, including industry and tourism.

Train services also contribute to environmental preservation by reducing carbon emissions. Furthermore, railways are a safer and more secure means of transportation, contributing to the overall improvement in the quality of life.



EU States Agree on 14th Sanctions Package Against Russia

The European Union flag inside the atrium during an EU summit at the European Council building in Brussels, Monday, June 17, 2024. (AP Photo/Omar Havana)
The European Union flag inside the atrium during an EU summit at the European Council building in Brussels, Monday, June 17, 2024. (AP Photo/Omar Havana)
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EU States Agree on 14th Sanctions Package Against Russia

The European Union flag inside the atrium during an EU summit at the European Council building in Brussels, Monday, June 17, 2024. (AP Photo/Omar Havana)
The European Union flag inside the atrium during an EU summit at the European Council building in Brussels, Monday, June 17, 2024. (AP Photo/Omar Havana)

European Union countries agreed on a 14th package of sanctions against Russia over its war in Ukraine, diplomats said on Thursday, including a ban on re-exports of Russian liquefied natural gas (LNG) in EU waters.
Belgium, which holds the rotating EU presidency until July 1, said on the X platform that the package "maximizes the impact of existing sanctions by closing loopholes".
Countries debated the new measures for over a month and ultimately watered down one of the Commission's proposals, aimed at preventing even more circumvention, at Germany's prompting, Reuters reported.
The dropped measure would have forced subsidiaries of EU companies in third countries to contractually prohibit the re-exports of their goods to Russia. The EU is keen to stop the flow of dual-use technology such as washing machine chips that could be used by Russia for military purposes.
An EU diplomat said Germany had asked for an impact assessment, and the measure could be included at a later date.
The ban on trans-shipments is the first restriction the bloc has applied to LNG. However, gas market experts say the measure will have little impact as Europe is still buying Russian gas itself, and trans-shipments via EU ports to Asia represent only around 10% of total Russian LNG exports.
The package also tightens measures against the shadow fleet moving Russian oil outside the price cap on Russian crude set by the Group of Seven (G7) nations. EU countries added tankers to the list of sanctioned entities as well as at least two Russian-owned ships moving military equipment from North Korea, diplomats said.
Overall, 47 new entities and 69 individuals were added to the EU sanctions list, bringing the total to 2,200. The package is expected to be formally approved when EU foreign ministers meet on Monday, diplomats said.