Africa

High-speed rail arrives in Morocco

Updated 9:26 AM ET, Fri January 20, 2017
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A carriage of the French-made TGV train arrives at the Moroccan port of Tangier, the first high-speed train to operate in Africa.

The TGVs are capable of speeds of 200 miles per hour, and they will cut the journey time between Tangier and Morocco's economic capital Casablanca by more than half.
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The trains are currently being tested ahead of the launch of the 350-kilometer route in 2018.

The $2 billion investment in the new trains and track is funded by the governments of Morocco, France, Saudi, Arabia, Kuwait and the UAE.
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Over 200 kilometers of tracks have already been laid, according to Moroccan officials, with around 5,000 construction workers employed on the project. AFP/AFP/AFP/Getty Images
The Moroccan national rail operator ONCF claims that passenger numbers will double between Tangier station (pictured) and Casablanca - from three to six million per year, providing a rapid return on investment. LIONEL BONAVENTURE/AFP/AFP/Getty Images
The new trains can reach speeds of 200 miles per hour, twice the speed of South Africa's Gautrain, a rapid mass transit system launched in 2012 which falls short of criteria for a high-speed train. Veronica Garbutt/Lonely Planet Images/Getty Images/Lonely Planet Images