Alstom To Complete Order of 800 Electric Locomotives In Next Five Years
Alstom won the 3.5-billion euro order in 2015, making it the largest foreign direct investment in the Indian railway sector.
The French rolling stock maker Alstom said it will complete the order for 800 fully electric 12,000 horsepower locomotives for the Indian Railways in the next five years.
“We’ve delivered 276 locomotives out of 800, and close to 100 locomotives will be delivered every year from here,” Anil Kumar Saini, managing director of rolling stock and components at the company’s India unit, told BQ Prime. “In the next five years, the order will be completed.”
The WAG-12B locomotives, considered the most powerful electric engines made in India, are already being used for carrying goods on major freight routes, including on the ambitious dedicated freight corridors.
"Indian Railways needs to create a lot of capacity, which they're doing. Part of the capacity building is putting the high-horsepower locomotives on the track, which can carry freight faster and also haul longer and heavier trains," Saini said.
The company won the 3.5-billion euro order in 2015, making it the largest foreign direct investment in the Indian railway sector. These rail engines are expected to transform the country’s heavy freight transportation landscape by increasing the average speed and carrying capacity of trains carrying goods.
Manufactured at Alstom’s Madhepura facility in Bihar, the locomotives are capable of hauling nearly 6,000 tonnes at a top speed of 120 km/h.
According to Saini, the locomotives are a game changer for freight movement in India and fit well with the government’s ambitions of reducing logistics costs to single digits from 14% and becoming a $5 trillion economy.
Indian Railways aims to more than double its cargo loading to 3,000 million tonnes by 2027 from 1,418 MT in FY22. The ongoing projects for the eastern and western dedicated freight corridors are expected to play a crucial role in meeting this goal.
The French company also recently won a Rs 2,631 crore order for designing and manufacturing 312 metro coaches for Delhi Metro’s Phase IV project, adding to a long order book of other metro project wins.
“Metro is one of our biggest businesses; we have a capacity of manufacturing close to 900 coaches per year,” Saini said at the Saharanpur maintenance plant for the high-powered electric locomotives.
He also confirmed the company’s bid for the tender of 200 Vande Bharat trains floated by the Indian Railways. According to some reports, five consortiums or companies have participated in the Rs 58,000 crore tender to manufacture and maintain the trains for the next 35 years.