Indian Railways looks to export world-class trains! Coach factories to take bulk orders for new revenue stream

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Updated: November 24, 2018 1:57 PM

In a first of its kind initiative, Indian Railways is mulling a new export policy that will allow its coach factories to take orders from other countries for manufacturing train rakes.

Indian Railways looks to export world-class trainsIndian Railways is seeking alternative sources of revenue by capitalising on the cost advantage offered by India’s coach factories which manufacture train cars up to a fifth cheaper.

Indian Railways plans to export world-class trains! In a first of its kind initiative, Indian Railways is mulling a new export policy that will allow its coach factories to take orders from other countries for manufacturing train rakes. According to an HT report, the General managers of all coach factories will be empowered to travel to various prospective countries and take bulk orders to ‘Make in India’ train rakes for export. After executing the last order for train coaches, from Sri Lanka, in 2010-2012, the lack of an export policy has crippled the ability of state-run factories to seek regular overseas orders. For potential customers under the proposed policy, the national transporter is looking at Southeast Asia, the Middle East and Africa.

The report said that Indian Railways is seeking alternative sources of revenue by capitalising on the cost advantage offered by India’s coach factories which manufacture train cars up to a fifth cheaper than overseas competitors. It is being expected that the export policy will empower General Managers and officials of the above rank to take decisions and fix the deals quickly. According to Railway Board Chairman Ashwani Lohani, Indian Railways has been carrying out export orders through RITES, which is a state-run consulting company that specialises in transport infrastructure, but with a new export policies, the national transporter will be able to take orders directly.

Watch now! Indian Railways to export this world-class DEMU train to Sri Lanka

Rajesh Agarwal, Member Rolling Stock, Railway Board was quoted in the report saying Indian Railways has good capacity to ‘Make in India’ coaches and the national transporter can maintain international standards as well. He said that the cost per coach will be 20% to 25% less than what is offered by other countries around the world. Indian Railways, if an export policy is in place, will be able to take frequent orders and the railway officials will not have to take an approval for every decision.

Recently, the first set of Diesel Electric Multiple Units (DEMU) was exported by Indian Railways from Integral Coach Factory (ICF), Chennai to Sri Lanka. ICF GM Sudhanshu Mani had told Financial Express Online that the build quality and features of the export DEMU rake for Sri Lanka are world-class. The factory has exported coaches as well as coach components to various other countries such as Taiwan, Malaysia, Philippines, Vietnam, Bangladesh, Angola, Tanzania, Mozambique, Nigeria, Uganda and Sri Lanka.

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