Germany’s Siemens has teamed up with a Chinese consortium to supply trains and equipment for 450-km (280 mile) railway in Saudi Arabia, the FT.

Citing unnamed sources, the paper said Siemens has abandoned its initial bid with the Saudi Binladin Group, in a move to position itself as a frontrunner in a consortium led by China South Locomotive & Rolling Stock Corporation.

No one at Siemens, which is expected to supply signaling and electrification equipment for the high-speed railroad, could immediately be reached for comment.

The Haramain Railway, or the Two Holy Mosques railroad, will link the spiritual heart of Islam, Mecca, and its second-most sacred city, Medina, to the kingdom’s commercial hub Jeddah on the Red Sea coast.

The Chinese consortium also includes China Railway Construction Corp and the Beijing Railway Administration.

France’s Alstom and South Korea’s Samsung C&T are also among the five pre-qualified consortiums bidding for the final phase of the high-speed link. (Reuters)